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  1. Spectrum Alpha 0.3.5 Live Highlights: Today we are pleased to release the latest update to the Spectrum Alpha, 0.3.5. This update incorporates many new features that were requested by you, the Star Citizen community. View Modes You can now select your preference for how threads are sorted (hot, last-activity, top, new) in channels via the Settings. You can now select your preferred thread view mode (nested, classic) via the Settings. You can now select your preference for how thread replies are sorted (top, new, old) via the Settings. The forum category default sort setting has been removed and is replaced by a user-specific setting. The thread type chosen in previous Spectrum versions has been replaced by a user-specific setting pair (sort and view mode) Threads will now persist your preferred view mode and sort if you change it from your user-specific setting. Read State Spectrum now tracks if you read each reply in a thread and will display a yellow unread marker to indicate a reply you have never read. Tags A new forum category level setting allow you to enforce that threads must be created with a tag. You can now bookmark forum tags directly to your sidebar! You can now browse the tags available for each forum category and community index. Threads list will now indicate which threads contain posts made using tracked roles in that community (Staff posts will be marked in the SC public community) Bookmarks You can now edit your bookmark aliases by visiting the “Manage Bookmarks” view. Search New filters are now available to search by author and role within your communities. This is just another step in making Spectrum the best communication platform for the Star Citizen community. Click here to read the complete patch notes for 0.3.5 Przeczytaj całość
  2. Monthly Studio Report: May 2017 Greetings Citizens! Welcome to Monthly Report for May 2017, our detailed list of what the developers in Los Angeles, Frankfurt, Austin, and the UK have been up to for the past four weeks in both written and video form. CIG Los Angeles CLOUD IMPERIUM: LOS ANGELES ENGINEERING Our Tech Design, Engineering, and QA teams have made steady progress in their various disciplines to roll out a fleet of ships that operate under the Item System 2.0 system with updated or new items that can be loaded onto them. We’ve now successfully converted the Origin M50 Interceptor to fully utilize this new system since it is a comparatively easier ship to set up while still allowing us to discover issues that we can address for all 49 flyable ships and beyond. Our first round through the setup procedure allowed us to identify opportunities to create tools that will further speed our implementation time in the future. This attention to detail has really allowed us to balance power usage, heat generation, associate EM and IR signals, and balance hydrogen and quantum fuel consumption across our ships and a lot of insight into how the player could consider upgrading their ship components. The engineering team also made major strides in the areas of persistence and inventory by creating a technique for clients to request persistent information. This work will be incorporated into several large features in 3.0 such as cargo, shops, commodities, Air Traffic Control, Ships, Players, and more. It will allow game code to query for and modify data for entities that aren’t even spawned, such as selling cargo from a ship that’s landed at a station and hidden away by ATC. These features will also allow game code to correctly re-spawn and orient ships or items that have been abandoned on planets or in space, meaning you can expect the world and your possessions to remain in the same state in between game sessions. We’ve made progress on the system which allows one to park their ship inside of another to transport safely from point A to point B. This was based off of a rework of the landing mechanic that’s currently in the game. The new docking areas are set up the same way as landing pads used within the universe, taking components with a different interface and a new mechanism for locking. There has also been some work on the physics of getting the Ursa Rover to sit in the cargo bay of the Constellation Andromeda without popping through walls and jittering. The team has also now also converted the basic quantum drive to Item 2.0, giving it the ability to store quantum travel and other navpoints. This means that all discovered quantum travel points can be set as travel destinations at any time regardless of distance and signature strength. This also involves working closely with Design on a way to better display them to the player in a logical interface. From here, we can move on to pure 2.0 systems as Quantum Drive now uses the pipe system for fuel and power checks as well as make quantum drive look and sound as awesome as it behaves by connecting VFX and Audio to the actual transit. This month we’ve implemented a several new features into our Intelligent Flight Control System (IFCS). On the physics side, we’ve implemented an autopilot system to allow AI and any other systems to utilize IFCS, like takeoff, landing or quantum drive, or anywhere a ship control needs to be automated. We’ve also added support for Cinematics to be able to automate the motion of thrusters on ships, so they don’t need to hand animate every thruster action in a cinematic. With this in place, the thrusters on a ship will now behave as intelligently as they do in game. SHIP TEAM Our ship team made steady progress on the RSI Aurora since our last update. The art team has now completed the seat geo for the ES and LN variants and started work on the engines while tech design is implementing these new assets directly into the ship archetype making this our first scratch built Item System 2.0 ship. Also, the Anvil Terrapin’s exterior is nearing completion of the greybox phase and has near final animation. TECH ART As you know, the scale of Star Citizen is such that even large teams need some additional support in the form of outsourcing partners. One of the difficulties with outsourcing tends to be ensuring a team’s refined processes are adhered to and all assets that are delivered meet our requirements for easy integration into the game. As you’ve heard about in the past, there are many pipelines and processes within Star Citizen and some are more complicated than others. Onboarding an outsourcing team requires tools that can be installed and run in an external environment with limited support from us in order to save time. So this month, the tech animation team developed a standalone installer that automatically mounts sample assets, tools and documentation, no matter if it’s for Motion Builder or in Maya. We can now easily minimize the ramp-up time for any potential partners and while allowing them to benefit from the extensive internal tools that are developed for our needs. Tech animation is responsible for the character’s skeleton and, like all things, creating a character skeleton can be done manually or automatically. Typically, a skeleton rig is not so complex and tends to be somewhat static, so it doesn’t change often, but, when you’re on the cutting edge of technology, updates are often required. For example, an animation engineer may require the addition of a specifically named joint for code purposes, thus requiring changes to all skeletons in the game, which would be a time consuming process if done manually. We’ve now completed our SRC (or Source) rigging scripts and can make these kinds of updates quickly, easily, and bug-free. The time and energy saved is not only for the rigging team, but also for the animation team who will be utilizing these skeletons day to day. A programming analogy would be to think of the rig as a compiled executable. The SRC rigging scripts are the source code. If we need to add something to the skeleton, we update the source code and compile it rather than patching the executable. You just build it anew. The tech art team also created a new data structure that will allow players to customize their eye color. This supports the first pass of the character creator where players will be able to select from a preset eye color pallet. In addition, tech art took advantage of a feature provided by the LA Engineering team that allows the body skin tone to automatically adjust to the skin tone of the face through the magic of item port tags. In the case of NPCs, this will maintain consistency for our characters and in the case of players this will ensure your body always matches your face. They’ve also created a process to generate SDF (or signed distance field) volume textures, which are used in conjunction with our atmospheric flight model to simulate engine trails. We’ve made solid progress on art tools for our various art teams. One such tool is our “unbevel” tool, which simplifies our LOD (or Level of Detail) creation process to increase performance on anything beyond our first LOD and speed up delivery time for our ship pipeline. Finally, this month we’ve taken large steps forward on our procedural system for outposts including color tinting, material variation, and even variation of props and their placement within the outposts. CHARACTER TEAM Our character team have added more armor suits to the armory. We now have a fully rigged female medium marine and the male heavy outlaw suit going has moved from concept toward final implementation. We’re also far along on many new uniforms, costumes, characters, and heads for Squadron 42. The male OMC light is wrapping up its initial high poly pass and has moved onto in-game mesh creation. The male Shubin miner uniform has begun in-game texturing now that the mesh is complete. A new outlaw uniform has just finished up concepting and is on its way to high poly. Our Female Marine BDU finished up sculpting and is headed to in-game modeling. With the FOV slider work in-progress for 3.0, the character team also spent time working on our helmet interiors starting with the heavy outlaw and heavy marine which is used by our UI team to establish necessary boundaries. NARRATIVE The Narrative spent the month divided. Dave and Will shipped off to the Wilmslow office to spend some time with Design and attend Squadron 42 level reviews with Chris. During that time, they also generated a handful of new scripts for 3.0 to cover [REDACTED] [REDACTED] and [REDACTED] which was very exciting to expand upon. Meanwhile, back in the LA office, Adam and Cherie were holding down the fort. Adam was juggling Jump Point articles, News Updates, while working on components for 3.0 while Cherie was maintaining her stalwart battle against chaos on our internal wiki and spearheading several new archiving systems to catalog the massive amounts of performance capture data as well as video captured for our various marketing and community programs. QA QA has been busy supporting the transition into the Item 2.0 conversion by taking an early look at the ships, and determining how to convert all existing checklists to the new 2.0 framework. When making any impact to our game, QA has to test everything, which in this case, included all the different interaction points. Prior, the interaction points were limited to the exit and entrance, but now checks have been added for Ladder Entry/Exit, EVA entry/exit, Power On/Off, Engines On/Off as well as looking ahead for features not yet implemented such as Ejection and cases in which more than one player attempts a particular interaction. CIG Austin CLOUD IMPERIUM: AUSTIN DESIGN Right now the ATX Design Team is completely focused on things related to 3.0 or near term goals. First off, the team has been building State Machines for the first few NPCs that we’ll be implementing. To provide a bit of background, a “State Machine” is a way to visualize how the NPC will behave, it not only acts as a behavior tree, but also informs the animation team when and where our animations need to transition between each other. We hand off these state machines to the Animators who then approve the behavior or give it back with feedback. Not only does this drive the animations we need, but also guides the NPC’s behavior setup in Subsumption. The Nav Beacon System is a new mechanic that will allow players to create their own roads throughout a given Star System. These are physicalized objects that are deployed through utility mounts and give players visual markers to lock onto for Quantum Travel while in space or, if used on planetary surfaces, will provide a known point to fly towards. Players will be able to grant “Use” access to others as well as “Hack” another person’s beacon, both allows you to use someone else’s Nav Beacon. There are multiple sizes and quality levels that dictate several things: how far they can be seen from and how long they last before they need to be serviced by the Owner. Finally, because they are physical objects you will be able to not only find, but destroy someone else’s Beacon, which should make for some interesting gameplay. Finally, the team have been organizing Miles Eckhart’s assets (which are being polished by the animation team in our Derby Office), creating his state machine, and getting his initial behavior up and running in Subsumption. Eckhart will be unlocked to the players by accumulating ‘Reputation’ with him, earned by completing other available missions. Once unlocked, you can visit him for a wide variety of missions. The new “Mission Manager” will drive his selection, but you will be able to choose from anything he currently has available. Setting up this character will provide a lot of great information for future Mission Givers, so we’re looking forward to getting him out there. PU Game Director Tony Zurovec has had his hands full with several things this month like reviewing mission scenarios for 3.0, but a major part of his focus was on Subsumption. As a reminder, Subsumption is the data-driven and highly abstracted foundation on which all of the AI and mission logic in Star Citizen is constructed. Tony finished the conversion of the Subsumption tech to Linux for integration with our backend services and completed the Shopping Service for game code to start hooking the new shopping tech into. SHIP TEAM Ship Artist Josh Coons has been working on the ship LODs for the Cutlass Black. It’s a very time-consuming task since our LODs are mostly handmade and the ship he’s working on is quite large with many pieces that have to be optimized. In addition to optimizing the mesh, he also reduces the material IDs, as he goes down the LOD chain. This way the mesh will have less draw calls from a distance and be more efficient on the engine. ANIMATION This month, the PU Animation Team finished up the two-handed carry animations for a variety of postures (such as standing, crouching and zero-g), a number of crate sizes and even a variety of heights. Code and Tech has hooked it up so that you can retrieve cargo in zero-g, EVA back to your ship and stow your acquired loot in your cargo bay. Animation Director Steve Bender stopped by the office for a visit, so we ended up doing a last minute mocap shoot in our office where he ran around like a crazy person capturing all our FPS starts and stops for a stocked rifle locomotion set. We also took this opportunity to get Sandy Gardiner in the suit and capture some exercise motion for our female characters when they decide to do a workout in our exercise usable. On the second day, lead animator Bryan Brewer hopped in and captured needed animations for the crouching carry animations. Animation worked closely with design to start work on some of the interactable NPCs, such as bartenders and shopkeepers. The Ship Animation Team continued to improve upon the cockpit experience. They worked with designers and programmers over in the UK to update our gforce blendspace poses, utilize a low pass filter for smoother, smarter camera motion; as well as adjust the cockpit geometry to allow for button presses. In addition to this, we created a system that will allow us to make comms calls within the ships during flight. IT/DEV OPS Our Server Engineers have been providing support for the shopping service which communicates with Diffusion and the game systems through our new Diffusion gateway. The gateway allows external/non-Diffusion services to communicate with the game as if they were an internal Diffusion service. We’ve also focused on integrating the Diffusion code into the primary game development branch that will be deployed with 3.0. This was a massive integration with a lot of moving parts and required a large amount of collaboration between Server Engineering and DevOps. The effort has taken a few weeks to get everything moved over, tested, and in a state where it can be deployed. We have also been working on a Service Creation Tool. This tool will provide a simple to use UI allowing engineers to create new services, add/remove or modify components, and management in source control. The output of the tool is a basic service shell and set of source files that are customized for the new service. When complete, this will be a huge time saver and allow new engineers to create services without worrying about any boilerplate work and thus allowing for rapid service development. We have started to add Star Citizen specific extensions to Ooz. For those who don’t know, Ooz was written by Lead Server Engineer Jason Ely and is the scripting language that drives Diffusion. These extensions expose SC-specific constructs to Diffusion, allowing services to provide more intricate support for game-play features which help move the game into a more distributed architecture. We’ve also continued work on the Router Mesh functionality. This feature distributes services over multiple router endpoints and provides redundant communication paths between other services. The mesh will use a technique to isolate high bandwidth services away from lower bandwidth or more critical services. The primary responsibility of the router mesh is to provide a high level of service availability and performance. Finally, the DevOps team has been busy optimizing the build and publishing systems. The game builds are growing rapidly as content continues to pour in for 3.0, so we’re constantly tweaking and tuning to keep up with the demands of the dev team. Ahmed and his team have been collecting feedback on network performance from our three locations and comparing that to internal data, so we can optimize network performance wherever possible. This is an ongoing task but we’ve already found some good opportunities for improvement in this area. QA For May, Austin QA worked heavily on regression of bugs, particularly on a massive sweep through our open bugs to see what items are still valid given the new systems and tech coming online for both PU and S42. This allowed us to eliminate a considerable number of bugs before they ever reached development, saving our busy developer cohorts time they would have spent investigating issues that were no longer occurring in the latest builds. Major testing items for our group included actor serialization, multi-threaded resource containers and network transport queue for the Engineering teams. We continued testing the Moons in the Stanton system for any potential issues such as collision and performance testing. New vehicles, ships and FPS items came online throughout the month (including the Behring P8-SC SMG which we were very excited to play with) in addition to testing the continued Item 2.0 implementations. All of which have kept our Arena Commander and Star Marine testers very busy. On the new system front, we’ve been working very hard testing the new procedural breathing and stamina system as well as the new Air Traffic Controller system. We’ve also been testing some updates to our current game Launcher – primarily bug fixes to our players but also a few quality-of-life fixes, continued providing additional support for the animation groups here in Austin, including mocap file cleanup, supporting setup and teardown for pick-up shoots and in-game video captures for final reviews. Regular Editor and engine testing has continued as well, with ATX QA completing regular smokes of the subsumption editor, procedural planet tools as well as our normal editor testing. PLAYER RELATIONS The Player Relations team has been extremely busy preparing for upcoming 3.0 work. The biggest item that players will see is the New Player Experience that will ultimately go on the website. These are intended to provide helpful guides for new players entering into the Star Citizen universe and help bring them up to speed with the game and its various mechanics. We’ll also be adding to the Evocati ranks in the coming weeks, and are excited to announce that we’ll be adding headcount in Austin, Manchester, and Frankfurt. Foundry 42 UK FOUNDRY 42: UK SPRINTS Let’s start with the ongoing Sprints. We’ve completed the initial groundwork for the Air Traffic Controller sprint and moved on to more of the functionality including communicating with the ATC. When you want to land, you can now target the station and, using the player interaction system, select the option to request a landing. You will then start a communication channel with the NPC and have a dialogue with them. We’re currently in the process of implementing this in real world test cases, for example in our PU map we’re setting it up at port Olisar so both requesting your ship as well as landing will all go through the ATC system. As part of a push to make Star Citizen more accessible, we’re introducing a new Hint System to lower the initial learning curve for new players. As they take their first steps into Star Citizen universe, various hints will get displayed on the UI after a given amount of time to indicate how to interact with the different systems, such as entering the proximity of the ASOP terminal or letting them know about the mobiGlas feature. For 3.0, we’ve also changed how the Player Spawns into a level. Currently, each bedroom in the PU map has its own spawn point and then some flowgraph logic to position them correctly in the bed, and play the correct animation. As you can imagine, based on the number of spawn locations in the PU, this is adding up to a lot of flowgraph and setup. Going forwards, we’re creating a new spawn component which can be added to any entity. For example, if this component is added to a bed, we will then assume the player will need to be attached correctly to it and play the normal lie down idle animation automatically. This now means we can now remove a large amount of flowgraph and simplify the setup of the level. We’ve made progress on implementing the mission broker and the mission manager systems. These will determine how a mission and all its objectives are presented and given to the player to complete. This system will also track what missions a player already has and how far through the objectives they are. In the AI Locomotion sprint, we’re spending time refining the way the AI walks and runs around a level. We have found that just following the path which is determined by the path finding code gives a result which looks very unnatural. We’ve now implemented a new path smoothing algorithm which makes AI traverse around corners in a much more natural way, so it doesn’t look like they’re just going from one point to the next. Because they are generally moving to get to a particular place we are currently working on making reaching that point, and going into whatever animation is required, be as seamless as possible. GRAPHICS The graphics team wrapped up the major features mentioned in our last update such as lit fog, real-time environment probes for planet lighting, and the render-to-texture work for holograms and video comms. In addition to general bug-fixing, they’ve also tweaked our lighting model to improve the appearance of ground reflections of the sun on planets at sunset and sunrise. ANIMATION On the FPS weapons side, the UK animation team completed the previs for the new Gemini L86 ballistic pistol and nearly completed the Arrowhead with just some minor polish work left on the reload states. The takedowns have gone from an implementation pass to a refined animation pass, with concentration on stronger composition, solid posing, clear silhouettes, and polish to the mocap data to better sell the overall action. The AI animation work is ongoing with improvements to the posing of enemy patrol states and reactions to sight and sound. The team are also helping to export the remaining gameplay story cinematic scenes, so that design can implement, and better visualize the story within the levels they are working on. The Derby animation team are finishing off the facial animations for the 3.0 Mission Givers and Eckhart’s body animation is being polished and implemented too. Last week, some of the team attended a PU audio and facial shoot in London. They captured some awesome footage from a great set of actors and we think it will go a long way to fleshing out the Universe. VFX The VFX Team have continued tests with the new Lightning Entity, this time focusing on smaller-scale, interior electrical effects. They also tested the features in the new particle system, as provided by the Graphics team including better trail options, and depth-buffer-based collision (required for sparks, for example). The team started the first Levski exterior VFX Pass which includes refinery flames and general ambiance. Flight-ready VFX, including interior damage and thruster effects are now done for the Cutlass rework and the team have continued on the Atmospheric Flight Effects sprint, with heavy focus on playtesting, bug-fixing and testing new features as provided by the Graphics and Engineering teams. Outside of these features, the team continued ongoing polish on the VFX for new weapons, and reworked versions is continuing up to the 3.0 release. SHIP ART The Origin 600i has finished its concept phase and the next ground vehicle has been rocking along. We’re just about to kickoff a whole new round of ships, but can’t spoil which ones. In Reclaimer news, the team completed work on the drone room. They were keen to focus on the drone deployment and storage mechanism, and are excited to see this become functional when drones come online. The Engine room has also been completed, making use of re-purposed assets from the Idris where possible. All the reused assets go through a process of re-skinning with Reclaimer materials to make everything feel consistent and cohesive. On the exterior, the damage setup is nearly complete with internal geometry being built to be exposed when the ship takes damage. The initial batch of work on the Derelict ships and wreckage elements are coming to an end with support is now in place for design to create mission scenarios based on derelict ships in space or on planets. Material variations of each ship have been created, so that depending on which planet the ships are placed on; they will look visually embedded to the surface type. All that’s remaining for this phase are the technical elements such has LODS, Vis-Areas and Collisions. The Gladius cockpit has been revamped and re-lit for the new “Cockpit Experience” sprint. This has been an exercise in improving the player’s feeling of immersion and has been a collaboration between several departments. From the art side, this was achieved by clearing a channel between the top support screens to reveal the Gatling gun on the nose, making a range of interactive buttons for more interesting animations and remodeling the throttle for improved functionality. The cockpit canopy has been extended for better clarity and new interior lighting has been added to help bring it all to life. On the Hull C exterior, the team is nearly finished with the landing gear mechanisms and detailing the inner bay areas, while we create the initial animations and work towards final art. They finished modelling the front section of the interior and the section is getting a detailed lighting pass using the new light groups controller. Once this is complete, the tunnel section and rear engine room will be modeled and lit in the same fashion. WEAPON ART On the ships weapons front, we have taken the Klaus & Werner styling from the FPS weapons and used that influence to work on a K&W Laser Repeater. At the other end of the spectrum, we also concepted some cool-looking MaxOx Neutron Repeaters. ENVIRONMENT ART The Art team continued to hammer away at Shubin mining station interiors and focused on improving the overall “believability” of the structure, by zeroing in on the functionality of the individual areas. Adding Texture and Visual Interest to our Space overworld has been a big priority for the 3.0, so the team has turned to giving our Space Scenes a major face-lift with the goal of diversifying environments and adding a unique flavor to each of our locations. Large volumes of inter-planetary space dust have been added and the team re-worked some of the distant nebula in the Stanton System to this end. We also worked on large-scale nebula rendering techniques, using the Pyro System as a test case. These techniques will help us create our interstellar scale nebula. For Squadron 42, the team delved deeper into the look and feel of the Coil, which plays a major role in the first campaign. The team explored using powerful fluid simulations to help achieve this look. For the Truckstop station materials, the team finalized the panels shapes, adding some hue and gloss variation and elements of wear and dirt. The unclad frames are also being finalized, with structural elements surrounding machinery and high frequency detail. They continued to work on the solar panels, trying different ideas out, and getting them to a stage where they gel well with the rest of the truckstop. The team also finalized the main hull pieces and proceeded to the front and back sections of the station. Special consideration is being made to ensure all the pieces work well as a modular set and don’t look visually repetitive. Detailing areas around the landing pad is ongoing and this includes adding more visual complexity to the back of the landing pad as well as the borders around the edge of the pad. In relation to the Surface Outposts; more of the archetypal outposts have had a dressing and lighting pass, including an emergency shelter for crashed pilots to take refuge which can be found dotted around the moons. Also, an illegal drug lab, which may, or may not, be on one of the moons. The team also worked on providing further infrastructure to habitation pods including comms arrays, water collectors and small deploy-able communication units. Planet integration materials for the outpost exterior has been tested and tweaked for sand and ice biomes. This determines the amount of dirt build-up that can vary for each biome, and can be adjusted for each outpost for variation. Branding prototyping has been explored for procedural locations with the Rayari brand as a test case. This includes the main logos and text, along with secondary logos, idents, lines and signage. This would procedurally swap brands depending on who owns the outpost. DESIGN The live design team plowed ahead with content for the PU, but they’ve made sure to spend a bit of time giving some much-needed love to some of the existing Arena Commander and Star Marine maps. Dying Star has received a new lease of life with the addition of procedural asteroids, which give a more cinematic dogfighting experience. Both of the Star Marine maps have received a number of balancing changes, based on feedback from the community. In Echo Eleven, we’ve made some adjustments to the capture points, and in Last Stand and Demien we’ve added a sneaky new EVA route from the Marine spawn zone to landing pad B. UI On the UI front, the team chipped away at all the various features of the new MobiGlas. Progress has been made getting the home screen fully functional and displaying elements of the actor status, atmospheric readouts, suit status readouts, as well as personal overview. The Player Loadout Management app is now working on the mobiGlas. This interface should easily carry over to handle ship-loadout customization as well. The next big task is to get the new overhauled Mission Manager and Universal Inventory Manager up and running as well. The team also worked to get the mobiGlas UI to be projected using the new render-to-texture tech, which will make the UI look much more properly integrated within the game world. Work has continued on designing and implementing the upcoming character customization menu on the front-end, which will be introduced in 3.0. From here, players will be able to create and customize their various characters for the PU, obviously depending on how many character slots the player has. Initially, the level of customization will be limited, but it will expand in the future to provide much more granular control of character features. AUDIO The audio team has been working on several features for the 3.0 release, including the procedural planet ambiance system, which is designed to place appropriate sounds around the player dynamically as they traverse planetary bodies. They’ve also refined the approach on how we produce ship armaments and first person weapon audio, further ensuring they’re satisfying for the player, while reflecting player-driven modifications and customization. The team produced sound schemes for the different kinds of diegetic user interfaces that will feature in 3.0, including the kiosks – the audio direction of these vary to suit their tech level, and this presents some great opportunities to reinforce their look and feel. Preparation has begun in earnest for a Foley session at Pinewood Studios, to ensure audio coverage for character clothing and armor; and content to extend the footstep system further. Progress has also been made on the foundational audio tech such as dynamic bank loading, the actor-status system, the audio propagation system, and the music logic system. In addition, over the past month, the team produced content for derelict ships, bespoke 3.0 location sound design, ship damage VFX audio support, ship audio improvements and more. Foundry 42 DE FOUNDRY 42: DE AI The AI team started a sprint focused on human combat, with the end goal of improving all the combat work done in the previous months into something that represents our final quality. We initially focused on all the shooting functionalities, making sure the basic controls for accuracy and friendly fire are implemented correctly then dove into improving behaviors related to awareness, such as reactions to potential threats seen or heard from a wide range of distances. They also finished converting the ship AI to a newer updated version, meaning that weapons, shields, and countermeasures now work with the new Item 2.0 system. For now, it also supports the old ships to avoid any compatibility issues that may creep up. This is part of an ongoing effort to move ships away from Kythera AI control and bring us one step closer to fully switching to Subsumption-based AI for all ships. The past month, the AI team did some additional work on the AI modules. These modules represent an item that can be attached to a seat (any seat of a spaceship or a turret) and execute a behavior logic defined with the Subsumption editor. You might think of it as a piece of custom software that can be instructed to take control of the same items that are available to a player sitting in the same seat. It might work as an autopilot or autonomously take control of a turret and fire at an enemy target. This feature is crucial in multi-crew ships where the pilot might assign specific activities to the AI modules instead of another player or NPC. SYSTEM DESIGN The System Design team continued working on the Air Traffic Control system, adding conversations with the traffic controller and a smart system for allocating landing pads for pilots wanting to land or take off. They also updated all our doors to Item 2.0, which now makes them modular and a lot easier to implement. These changes included switchable loadouts for each door, the ability to connect two rooms so air can travel between them and provide the functionality needed for new systems that are already in the works such as breaching, hacking. They also started reworking airlocks so they work better with the room and atmospheric systems. The team also did some very rough prototyping work on dynamic advertising which will contextually fill in the in-game panels/screens throughout stations with content that is reflecting the interests of the player that enters its proximity. The same system could be used for showing large scale broadcasts and warnings throughout the universe based on what is happening in the game at that specific moment, either globally or locally. LIGHTING Our Lead lighting artist Chris Campbell continued work on the surface outposts (particularly on the habitation sets) and coordinated with the UK Environment Art team to stay in sync with all their updates to assets and dressing. Another issue Lighting has been trying to solve for 3.0 is how to improve the amount of visibility on the dark side of the moons. Previously, without any interest objects in the sky, the planet surface would be far too dark since it would have to rely solely on cubemaps, therefore the player wouldn’t be able to see any detail in the environment. Chris worked with the engineers to add another layer of atmospheric glow and irradiance which allowed us to brighten the atmosphere, giving a nice gradient that shows the shape of the horizon and some depth in front of the player. The irradiance provides a base level of brightness on the actual surface geometry, so the player can faintly see themselves as well as the surface around them. Finally, he’s also been providing support for S42 environment lighting and setting visual benchmarks for the levels. ENGINE TEAM The Engine Team implemented the initial version of our new IO scheduler which will improve performance by only streaming in textures, meshes, sounds, etc that are being used to stay within a memory budget. Eventually, it will also allow the job manager to better utilize CPU cores in cases where streaming jobs are waiting for IO. Moreover, it will lay the groundwork for a version of the scheduler specifically designed for SSD drives to exploit their superior random disc access properties that will allow for multiple concurrent data streams with high throughput. All in all, this ensures all data is available in time for complex scenes to render without having to wait for LODs and all the related artifacts. Meanwhile the incremental patcher moved into initial internal QA testing. As previously discussed, this system will deliver builds incrementally to devs and gamers alike, so every time you update the game you’ll only need to download what has actually changed or been added since the last time rather than the entire build which will make the update process much faster. We also revived our internal memory analysis tools for Linux to help find and fix memory leaks on server instances much faster. Memory leaks are one of the contributing factors for server stability and we want them fixed as quickly as possible to make sure servers can run for a long time without issues. On the rendering side, the team made several improvements to the atmosphere and night skies as mentioned in the lighting update. The night side of planets and moons now exhibit more details due to scattered moonlight and a visible sky gradient in the distance when close to the terrain surface. They also looked into additional improvements for stronger ground-based haze to further increase visual cues for scene readability and continued working on the Object Container streaming (SolEd as well as PlanEd) and the rewrite of the living entity code is on track. ENVIRONMENT ART The Environment art team continued to work with the Level Designers on Levski’s exterior. Both art and design regularly work closely together to verify that the art is made in a way that doesn’t break any portion of the design. The last layout changes for Levski are coming in and the set dressing pass is close to complete. The area around Levski is also being populated with slightly larger mining structures than what we previously had in. Since the Levski exterior has grown over the past few weeks, it’s also going through an optimization pass with the artists looking into reducing memory consumption wherever applicable and making each individual asset as efficient as possible. The terrain of Delamar was polished up and both the Assets and Rocks are all being finalized. The team also set up the specific asset scattering presets for the different ecosystem to populate the asteroid with defined objects. The overall Planet tech has gotten a couple of new features as well. The overall amount of materials that can be used on the terrain has increased significantly, therefore new materials are being created for the moons to make the surfaces even more diverse from one another. Along with that, the moons also got a performance boost by optimizing which assets are being drawn on the surface of the procedural entities at any given time. TECH ART The Tech Art team worked on multiple Mannequin tasks including animations for both usables and cinematics. In case you are unfamiliar, Mannequin is a tool within Lumberyard that allows us to construct complex interactive character animations. They also refined some of the pipeline tools by adding new features and fixing bugs to make them easier to use and more dependable. The team also prototyped a Vanduul weapon, started R&D on some Physical Simulation for weapons, and fixed some lingering bugs. VFX Over the past month, the VFX team continued to work on the particle effects for the planets as well as implemented new animated decals. This now allows us to project certain animated textures onto objects, so it will follow the contours of those objects instead of having them on a flat plane that is roughly aligned to the surface. This helps integrate certain effects into the world a lot more efficiently and with a better result than what we could do previously. The VFX team also expanded this month. Our newest member will primarily focus on the large amount of cinematics work that needs to be done for Squadron 42, including soft and rigid body simulations as well as destruction particle effects and the scene setups that go along with it. WEAPON TEAM This month, the FPS weapons team primarily focused on R&D efforts for weapons skins. They prototyped camouflage patterns, decals and material variations which will set us up for future weapon customization and allow us to quickly and easily create special one-off variants. The ship weapons artists are currently working on the Preacher Armament Distortion Scattergun S1 to S3 and started work on the Apocalypse Arms Ballistic Scattergun S1 to S3. CINEMATICS This past month, the Cinematics team focused on a Pre-vis pipeline, with the goal of getting most of the cinematics into the game regardless of whether they are polished or rough. This will help Designers and directors get a better idea of the overall flow and pacing for the full playthrough of Squadron 42. They will be working closely with the Facial and audio team to get a representation of the full performances in the engine. They also worked with Kyle Moody from the UK to set up a small motion capture system setup in one of our common areas. These eleven OptiTrack cameras gave us a small capture volume of roughly three meters squared. The cinematics team will primarily use this setup to capture background characters for individual scenes as well as transition animations to help link animations that are not quit aligning. It can also be used to capture quick animations that we can use for outstanding R&D tasks for our Animation engineers, and save the animators some time. The system won’t be set up permanently, but once we have a small list of animations that we want, the team can set it up in about an hour and quickly get what they need. GAME PROGRAMMING This month, the Game Programming team did a pass on improving the functionality of doors, then started working on airlocks. Both the doors and airlocks need to be simplified as much as possible and integrated with the latest changes of the Item 2.0 system. They also started planning the work needed for the improved Weapon System. That new system is based on the Item 2.0 system and will allow the designers to create a wider variety of weapons more easily. It will also address technical issues such as client-side-prediction and server authority. It’s still in the research phase and is a long-term effort however we’re confident that we’re on the right track and implementation can begin within the next few weeks. Finally, they added a few small features to the weapons such as the ability to have different muzzle flash effects or different vent effects based on the current fire mode. QA This month, the QA team welcomed their newest hire, John Lang, who quickly got up to speed and became a primary point of contact for any Game-Dev client issues in Frankfurt. He’s also been heavily involved in various system testing this month, such as the new Stamina System currently being worked on in both the Frankfurt and UK offices. Together with Glenn Kneale they were able to begin the initial testing pass in an effort to gather data for our game programmers to use for bug fixes and overall improvements to the system. The QA team also worked on testing the patcher, Editor, server connections, and the Star Citizen client using the new pak system in order to catch crashes and differences between builds pulled with the old patcher vs. the new patcher. This is an ongoing test that they perform daily to stay on top of any new issues that arise from build to build. Additionally, they also spent time testing various multiplayer issues for the Stanton System, which included moon collision testing. They worked extremely close with the engineers to test very specific things in very specific ways to get the data that the engineers are after. The engineers then take those findings to work out fixes for issues and also to improve things such as stability and memory usage. Turbulent TURBULENT This month, the team’s main goal was to streamline some of the information about the game and make the entry point into Star Citizen better. We aren’t removing any content and RSI will remain the Hub for all Star Citizen development and the Star citizen community, but soon you will see some new designs to the site that will clarify and streamline information about Star Citizen the game, the development, the community and Squadron 42. Aside from Design, our content and UX team have been hard at work with the creation of a new player guide. We have been working closely with CIG Player Relations, QA, Marketing and Production departments to consolidate information and generate a guide for new players. This is not an easy task because it’s not easy to identify what we call the “must knows” for the new players. Since the game is in alpha, the player guide will be designed as modular, changing as new patches are released to accommodate the ever-changing menus, UI and additional features. However, we are confident that the work we are doing will support new citizens and further expand our community. Keep your eyes open for the exciting new site launch. Community Community Summer is here and the community team has been busy supporting the 3.0 push. May was the busiest month for Bar Citizens ever, with events happening around the world from Boston to Perth, Berlin to Oklahoma City just to name a few. Bar Citizen is a great way to get to know your fellow Citizens, so keep your eyes peeled for one happening near you. This month on our dedicated community show, Citizens of the Stars, Todd Papy answered the highest voted Quantum Questions, Big JR made a life-sized Artex GSS replica and we had great community guests including Karmola, Alysianah, Captain Richard and Clifford aka Miku. Josh Herman joined us for another special episode of Happy Hour, in which he created another 3D creature for Star Citizen live for the community. We ran one of our most fun sales yet, revealing the Eclipse bomber as part of a UEE de-classification scene. The team had a whole lot of fun with social media, putting out little hints and teasers about the ship in the lead up to the reveal. Sandi spent some time in Austin this month for a Concierge Summit to work out how to better serve our backers. The project they’ve been working on is top secret, but expect to hear more about it soon. Our Subscribers helped test the Drake Buccaneer all this month, and it sounds like it’s in a good place right now. Next month, they’ll be flying the Caterpillar and anyone who subscribes is welcome to join. Subscribers also received the next item in their holographic flair set, a 3D model of the Icarus One station for their tables. And speaking of flair, we held a Subscriber Town Hall with members of the Star Citizen props team. The team answered plenty of subscriber questions about their work, and it was a rare opportunity for the community to meet the people making the universe feel lived in. That was it for the last month. To give you an idea of what to expect this month: Spectrum will receive a major update that will adds a myriad of new features, including Reddit-style threading and the return of ship forums. We’ve been spending some time behind the scenes working on the New Player Experience and learning how to best teach new Citizens how to fly. You’ll see the results of that work in the not-too-distant future. The team has also been busy planning Gamescom and CitizenCon, and we will have a date and further information to announce about CitizenCon shortly. Conclusion WE’LL SEE YOU NEXT MONTH… Przeczytaj całość
  3. Chris Roberts and Sandi Gardiner host today’s episode, which features a UK studio update and part two of our feature on how Item 2.0 affects ships. And for info on becoming a subscriber, go to: Przeczytaj całość
  4. Senior Writer Will Weissbaum tours the Tayac System, which is home to The Ark. Find out how this system went from being a military black site to a bastion of education and diplomacy. Remember that you can always explore the Star Citizen Universe yourself in our web-based Ark Star Map. Przeczytaj całość
  5. HuXa Vote UEE Congress (397) 2947-06-06 SET Session AutoScript Proofed and Admitted – Archivist Yates (#57573BDF) 2947-06-06_15:21 – Session Begins SPEAKER MARSHALL MADRIGAL (U – Borea – Magnus Sys): Ladies and Gentlemen, now that the majority of you are finally here, let me start by saying that while I certainly understand the additional security measures take longer to navigate, it would be beneficial if all of you could adjust your schedule to arrive earlier rather than to presume that the session will be extended to accommodate any late arrivals. I very much hope that we can see our way to starting tomorrow on time. And in that spirit, I am happy to finally declare that we have a quorum and call this session to order. First on today’s docket is the Human-Xi’an Trade Initiative. I ask for unanimous consent for the vote on the motion to proceed. Is there any objection? SENATOR HIDEO UTO (C – Severus – Kiel Sys): Mr. Speaker? SPEAKER MARSHALL MADRIGAL (U – Borea – Magnus Sys): Senator Uto. SENATOR HIDEO UTO (C – Severus – Kiel Sys): Mr. Speaker, in light of the recent shameful attacks perpetrated against Imperator Costigan and out of respect to those involved, I move to postpone the pending vote until after we have had a chance to conclude the ongoing investigation into the occurrences of May 30th. SENATOR TRACEY GLENN (U – Saisei – Centauri Sys): Point of clarification. SPEAKER MARSHALL MADRIGAL (U – Borea – Magnus Sys): The chair recognizes Senator Glenn. SENATOR TRACEY GLENN (U – Saisei – Centauri Sys): Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Would the honorable senator from Kiel care to explain why the recent horrific attack should impede this distinguished body voting on a trade initiative? SENATOR HIDEO UTO (C – Severus – Kiel Sys): I’d be happy to. It seems highly likely by the timing of this attack that it was at least in part motivated by HuXa and in fact, could potentially be an attempt to influence this very issue. Until we understand the full scope of such implications, would it not be wise to allow prudence to carry the day? SENATOR TRACEY GLENN (U – Saisei – Centauri Sys): Let me see if I understand, Senator Uto. Because the atrocious actions taken against Imperator Costigan may have been designed to influence the vote on HuXa, you are suggesting that we delay said vote to prove that they in fact did have an influence? SENATOR HIDEO UTO (C – Severus – Kiel Sys): I object to your oversimplification. SENATOR TRACEY GLENN (U – Saisei – Centauri Sys): And I object to you trying to leverage fear and rumor-mongering into political gain. SENATOR HIDEO UTO (C – Severus – Kiel Sys): You have no right to stand there and — SENATOR TRACEY GLENN (U – Saisei – Centauri Sys): The fact is that we have no official report detailing the motives of these assailants. As far as we know they were as likely to be striking a blow for Terran independence as they were for — SENATOR MIRA NGO (T – Terra – Terra Sys): That is outrageous. Where do you get off accusing Terra of — SENATOR TRACEY GLENN (U – Saisei – Centauri Sys): Sorry, that was a poor example. I withdraw the statement. I simply meant to — [ gavel banging ] SPEAKER MARSHALL MADRIGAL (U – Borea – Magnus Sys): Enough. I know things have been tense this past week, but that is no excuse for this lack of decorum. Now, I believe your point was clarified, Senator Glenn. Unless anyone else has anything to add, I move to close the discussion. All in favor of the motion to postpone? [ vote ] SPEAKER MARSHALL MADRIGAL (U – Borea – Magnus Sys): The nays carry it. Motion denied. Let us proceed. Senator McCain, as sponsor of the initiative, you have the floor. SENATOR WILL McCAIN (U – Cestulus – Davien Sys): Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I ask for consent to grant speaking privileges to a special guest, Imperator Costigan. [ surprised murmurs ] SPEAKER MARSHALL MADRIGAL (U – Borea – Magnus Sys): Without objection. IMPERATOR COSTIGAN: I apologize for the theatrics involved in my appearance here today. I know it is traditional for an Imperator to more formally announce intent to speak to the Senate, as I did many weeks ago when I had the distinct pleasure of first introducing the Human-Xi’an Trade Initiative. However, my security team decided it was best for the time being if my schedule were kept a bit more under wraps, so I ask for your indulgence as I come before you. When Ambassador Coso first began the negotiations that would result in the drafting of this deal, it was with two specific goals in mind. The first was to help ensure the continued economic growth of the Empire through trade. The second was to help ensure the Empire’s continued peace along our Xi’an borders through improved economic relations. I firmly and unequivocally believe that the Human-Xi’an Trade Initiative accomplishes both these aspirations and more. We all know too well the cost of war. Right now as we speak, the brave men and women of our armed forces are nobly struggling to end the Vanduul threat, but not all threats we must face come from outside. Stagnation and close-mindedness are just as likely as any war to bring all we’ve built to an end. Humanity saw what living in fear was like under the Messers and Humanity said no. When Senator Akari signed the Xi’an peace treaty in 2789 it was a first step forward out of the darkness. Today, the UEE is ready to take the next. By expanding trade relations with the Xi’an we will be expanding our potential not only economically, but as a people. But do not mistake moving forward as running ahead blindly. The Human-Xi’an Trade Initiative is a careful, measured step. Under this agreement, our Citizens’ security remains not only intact, but strengthened thanks to the additional revenue estimated to be generated. Our Citizen’s livelihoods will be equally protected, thanks to the fair and balanced terms of the agreement that will see us share growth and mutual prosperity with the Xi’an. There’s an old Earth aphorism that I keep going to, “a rising tide lifts all boats.” The time has come for our two cultures to stop holding each other back and instead raise each other higher than ever before. Thank you all for allowing me this chance to speak. Our actions here today will help shape Humanity’s future for centuries to come and I don’t think it could be in better hands. I return the floor to you, Senator McCain. SENATOR WILL McCAIN (U – Cestulus – Davien Sys): Thank you, Imperator Costigan, for sharing your vision with us and for your fortitude in light of last week’s savage attempt on your life. It is a stark reminder that while there is no denying that the Empire has a long history of violence, it is up to all of us to aspire to something greater. I implore you all to vote yes for the Human-Xi’an Trade Initiative. I yield the floor. SPEAKER MARSHALL MADRIGAL (U – Borea – Magnus Sys): The Senator from Earth? SENATOR VICTOR SKOVIRA (C – Earth – Sol Sys): Thank you. Allow me to say that it is a pleasure to see you in this chamber once again, Imperator Costigan. My thoughts go to the families of those who lost their lives in the attack. Now, I don’t want to waste everyone’s time by rehashing the well-argued positions that have been put forth by my colleagues over the last several weeks, but I would be remiss if I did not remind all of you what it is that is at stake here today. With the Vanduul waging relentless war along our border, with merciless outlaws terrorizing innocent Citizens every day and, as we were reminded all too well last week, with assassins daring to strike at the very heart of our Empire, it is clear to me that our vigilance must never waiver if we wish to persevere. The Xi’an are not like us. They are the definition of alien. All of them — from their lowliest criminal to the head of their mightiest house — all work for the glory of Emperor Kr.ē — the same glorious leader whose suspicions and distrust kept us on the brink of war for centuries. Are we to forget the lessons of the past just because some of us are distracted by the promise of a supposed bright, shiny future? While I agree that a position of peace with the Xi’an is far stronger than one of aggression, I am not convinced that intertwining our economies is in our best interest. This so-called trade deal only trades one thing as far as I’m concerned. It exchanges our security and our sovereignty for … well to be honest, I am not perfectly sure for what. Credits and economic growth is what they want you to think, but I fear that what we hope to gain is nothing compared to what we are posed to lose if HuXa passes. My vote is no. Mr. Speaker, I yield. SPEAKER MARSHALL MADRIGAL (U – Borea – Magnus Sys): If there are no further motions before the Senate? SENATOR RACHEL LESTER (T – Vann – Croshaw Sys): Mr. Speaker, I request a brief recess. SPEAKER MARSHALL MADRIGAL (U – Borea – Magnus Sys): Very well, as I see we still have several stragglers arriving through security, fifteen minutes recess granted. The vote on Human-Xi’an Trade Initiative will proceed once we’re back in session. [ gavel bang ] Przeczytaj całość
  6. Welcome to Citizens of the Stars, our new weekly program exclusively about you, the Star Citizen Community. Whether through bug reports on the issue council, feedback on the forums, or the creation of content inspired by the game, Star Citizen is only possible because of the community. Citizens of the Stars not only highlights these contributions, but also puts a dev in the hotseat for a round of Quantum Questions, which addresses some fun facts about the dev and game. This week OldSchool basks in the Citizen’s Spotlight, and Steven Kam (aka Toast) takes his turn in the Quantum Questions hot seat. Remember, many of the questions used are taken from our Star Citizen Subscribers in this thread here. Don’t forget to add yours for inclusion in future episodes, vote for the ones you want to see answered, and remember to keep them short and concise if you want your best chance of having them answered in under two minutes. The links for this week’s content are below: CITIZEN SPOTLIGHT OLDSCHOOL and The Citizens webcomic TOP 5: Vanduul Portrait by B_Tate29 Solarmute and The UEMC StarCarrier 3 Merlins in a Starfarer by Backbone Pedro! MVP: Adrian Sccenter and Stargazer Przeczytaj całość
  7. Greetings Citizens Greetings Citizens, For many of us, Summer is upon us and I hope you all managed to stay cool over the weekend. I tried to dodge the heat and make some homemade lemonade and… let’s just say I’ll be sticking to the store bought stuff in the future. With that, let’s take a look at this week. Today, Citizens of the Stars introduces us to Oldschool, who has created a series of webcomics highlighting some of the funnier moments in the Star Citizen universe. Also, Junior Counsel Steven “Toast” Kam takes on the hotseat in Quantum Questions. I don’t know about the rest of you, but I am SO ready for Brian Chambers to be de-throned. I’m about ready to take on the hot seat myself and show him how it’s done. Tuesday, the Lore Team will regale us with yet another detailed lore post. These posts are integral to building out our worlds and breathe life and history into the Star Citizen universe. Wednesday we sit down with Senior Writer Will Weissbaum to talk about the Tayac System for another installment of Loremaker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Thursday. Personally, my favorite day of the week. In fact, Thursday should just be renamed to F5 day! What am I talking about? Around the Verse returns for its weekly update on Star Citizen’s on-going development! ༼ つ ◕_◕ ༽つ Last but definitely not least, we end the week with May’s Monthly Studio Report! If the regular shows and comm-links were not enough, make sure to head over to the website on Friday for all that juicy information in one place. That’s all for this week folks! We’ll see you in the ‘Verse! Tyler “Zyloh” Witkin Lead Community Manager The Weekly Community Content Schedule MONDAY, JUNE 5TH, 2017 Citizens of the Stars ( TUESDAY, JUNE 6TH, 2017 Weekly Lore Post ( WEDNESDAY, JUNE 7TH, 2017 Loremaker’s Guide to the Galaxy ( THURSDAY, JUNE 8TH, 2017 Around the Verse ( Vault Update FRIDAY, JUNE 9TH, 2017 Monthly Studio Update RSI Newsletter Community Spotlight: June 5TH, 2017 – Podcast Citizen This week’s theme is “Podcast Citizen,” highlighting some of the podcast and talk shows from the Star Citizen community. Don’t forget to submit your content to our Community Hub for a chance at seeing it here! Inforunners The Inforunners is another podcast that talks about newest content in Star Citizen. Like [REDACTED], the most recent episode is all talk on the Aegis Eclipse and the untold truths. Listen to Dasein and Haze give praise to a ship designed to be to excell at delivering a payload. Watch the podcast here: [REDACTED] [REDACTED] is a popular weekly podcast hosted by popular influencers Twerk17, BoredGamerUK, and WTFOSAURUS. They discuss the news, development, and gameplay from Star Citizen. The most recent episode is all about our new stealth bomber the Aegis Eclipse, and in-game lighting. Check out their most recent episode here: Red Shirt Rabble Red Shirt Rabble is from same group who creates The Science in Star Citizen series on YouTube. It’s a general, all-around podcast about everything Star Citizen and is updated regularly to discuss the technical challenges of making Star Citizen, as well as what goes on in-game. Check out the latest episode: Przeczytaj całość
  8. Learn how the implementation of Item 2.0 will affect your ship. Sandi Gardiner and Eric Kieron Davis host this week’s episode, which also features studio updates from Austin and Turbulent. And for info on becoming a subscriber, go to: Przeczytaj całość
  9. Archivist Cherie Heiberg tours the protoplanetary disk that is the Kallis System. Get the science behind this forming system and the story about why the UEE is so keen to study it. Remember that you can always explore the Star Citizen Universe yourself in our web-based Ark Star Map. Przeczytaj całość
  10. BECK: Hello and welcome to Empire Report. I’m Beck Russum and joining me at the desk again tonight is none other than our very own Victoria Hutchins. She’s been doing an absolutely wonderful job covering for Alan this week while he’s taking some much-needed time off for his birthday. VICTORIA: It has been my pleasure to fill in. If anyone deserves a bit of a break, it’s Alan. BECK: And if you’re watching, Alan, we haven’t forgotten that you promised to share pics of your surfing adventure on Tangaroa when you get back. VICTORIA: I can’t wait to see Alan Nuevo hanging ten on a monster wave. BECK: That makes two of us. Now, we go from catching waves to tonight’s top story, the new trade deal that has been making waves. The Human-Xi’an Trade Initiative, or HuXa as it’s come to be known, has continued to be hotly debated since its unveiling in March. It should come as no surprise that the rhetoric from both sides has only escalated since it was announced that the Senate will hold its vote to decide the issue next week on June 6th. VICTORIA: In the wake of the vote announcement, anti-HuXa advocates from across the Empire have begun gathering at the popular Xi’an-owned CTR stations to protest the Initiative. They have called for a boycott of the repair and refuel shop, as well as boycotts of all Xi’an corporations operating in the UEE, like Aopoa and Torral Aggregate. Some have gone so far as to suggest that even companies with strong ties to Xi’an interests like MISC should likewise be avoided, in the interest of encouraging Citizens to spend their credits at entirely Human-owned businesses. BECK: Later in the program we will be sitting down with Empire Report special correspondent and political strategist, Ben Warden, author of Steps for Humanity: A Study of Political Discourse, to hear more about what those in the Senate are saying, as well as his predictions for the results of the vote. VICTORIA: Next, ready-to-eat meals can be a huge help when you’re traveling or when fresh food isn’t available. But for some, that convenience is coming at a price. BECK: That’s right, Victoria. The UEE Health Division released a statement earlier today showing that the recent outbreak of severe food poisoning that sickened dozens and left many more hospitalized has been traced back to a batch of foodpacks that were improperly sealed. Bevic Group, who manufactures Ma’s Ready-to-Eat Meals, has issued a full recall of all the home stew flavors — which include the beef, chicken and fish varieties — and urges everyone to check the production batch serial code on the packaging before consuming. They also went on to clarify that the other flavors of Ma’s remain safe to consume and that they are committed to food safety for all their products. A full list of affected packages along with contact information for Bevic is available on our spectrum. VICTORIA: Definitely important to get the word out. Would hate to think of a poor solo pilot getting sick just before a long haul. BECK: Of course, as terrible as food poisoning can be, it seems there’s a bigger threat looming for travelers in Kellog thanks to a new pack of outlaws operating in the system. We go now to Emily Havilan, who has been investigating this troubling trend. Emily? EMILY: Fear and terror are on the rise in Kellog as a new criminal organization has begun preying upon one unfortunate group in particular — research scientists. According to local Advocacy Agents, five ships have been hit already and that may only be the beginning of this worrying trend. It seems that there is likely — BECK: I’m sorry, Emily. I have to stop you right there for this breaking news. The Empire Report has just received word from Earth that there has been an attempt on Imperator Costigan’s life. Facts are still coming in as comm-drones arrive, but early reports say that the assassin was not successful and that Imperator Costigan has been taken to an undisclosed secure location until the threat is fully neutralized. The Imperator was scheduled to speak at the Banking Federation Summit going on in New York City this week, when the assailant opened fire at the stage. At least two members of the 1st Marine Combat Battalion were injured in the initial attack as well as — VICTORIA: We have a quick update, there’s been confirmation that one of the Marines guarding the Imperator has died from their injuries sustained in the line of duty. The other Marine is in critical condition, along with several civilians who were attending the summit and got caught in the crossfire. BECK: New York City has been placed on complete lock-down with all incoming and outgoing traffic stopped. It is not clear yet what motivated the attack or who was behind it, but a joint effort by local authorities, the Advocacy, and the 1st Combat Battalion is being made to apprehend those — Wait … I am being told that at least one of the assailants has been shot dead near the scene of the attack after a confrontation with Marines. No word yet on their identity. VICTORIA: To re-highlight what we know so far, a failed assassination attempt was made on Imperator Costigan at the Banking Federation Summit in Sol. One believed assailant has been killed on site. We still do not know if they were working alone or what their motivations were. Our thoughts are with the victims and their friends and family during this tragic time. BECK: Advocacy Director Thomas Carmody is scheduled to give an official statement in the next few minutes, and we will have further updates once that comm-drone arrives. Until then, we need to take a quick break, but please stay tuned as we bring you more details on this shocking turn of events. Przeczytaj całość
  11. Greetings Citizens Greetings Citizens, We are back from a long weekend and hitting the ground running! Let’s waste no time and jump straight into what’s going on this week. Yesterday, we released our weekly fan-centric show, Citizens of the Stars. This week’s episode highlighted special guests Clifford_aka_Miku, Design Director Todd Papy, and more! Tuesday, the Lore Team will release another installment in one of their many continuing series. The Empire Report brings you important news from across the universe. If you find yourself easily immersed in a good story, fascinated by the design of Star Citizen, or just hungry for more information, these posts are made for you. Wednesday, we will journey to the Kallis System in an all new episode of Loremaker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Thursday brings us Around the Verse, this time checking in with Jake Ross from our Austin, TX studio to see what his team have been working on this month. And if Austin wasn’t enough, we’ll also be visiting Benoit from Turbulent as he guides us through what’s been going on with Spectrum and the website. To wrap up the week, we will be broadcasting LIVE for Happy Hour Friday. Theme is TBD, but you can tune in at Lastly, the Aegis Eclipse sale will end the morning of June 2nd, so don’t miss your chance to pick up the recently declassified advanced stealth bomber. Tarp not included. Tyler “AdmiralSloth” Nolin Community Manager The Weekly Community Content Schedule MONDAY, MAY 29TH, 2017 Citizens of the Stars ( TUESDAY, MAY 30TH, 2017 Weekly Lore Post ( WEDNESDAY, MAY 31ST, 2017 Loremaker’s Guide to the Galaxy ( THURSDAY, JUNE 1ST, 2017 Around the Verse ( FRIDAY, JUNE 2ND, 2017 Happy Hour ( Vault Update RSI Newsletter Community Spotlight: May 30TH, 2017 – Cockpit Citizen This week’s theme is “Cockpit Citizen,” highlighting some of the custom gaming rigs from the Star Citizen community. Don’t forget to submit your content to our Community Hub for a chance at seeing your content here! spidy_IAI Custom design, with raising arm rests for easy entry and exit. The entire rig is customizable for each person’s needs including adjustable monitors, keyboards tray, and chair. Check out his gallery here: Dr_Oversteer Talk about immersion! Dr_Oversteer has a fully functional battlestation. He didn’t want to create just a cockpit because he will be flying all kinds of different ships in the ‘verse. It includes a X-56 HOTAS, Madcatz FLY1, Logitech G27 Pedals, and Thrustmaster MFDs! Full gallery here: BSA_Stormservant Stormservant created a custom cockpit dedicated to their organization. It’s a great looking, no-nonsense setup that gets him in and out of Star Citizen in style. BSA cockpit gallery: Przeczytaj całość
  12. Welcome to Citizens of the Stars, our new weekly program exclusively about you, the Star Citizen Community. Whether through bug reports on the issue council, feedback on the forums, or the creation of content inspired by the game, Star Citizen is only possible because of the community. Citizens of the Stars not only highlights these contributions, but also puts a dev in the hotseat for a round of Quantum Questions, which addresses some fun facts about the dev and game. The show about YOU, the Star Citizen community! This week featuring Design Director Todd Papy answering your questions and community streamer Clifford_aka_Miku extolling the virtues of Beam (now Mixer.) Plus: how many unicorns, again? Remember, many of the questions used are taken from our Star Citizen Subscribers in this thread here. Don’t forget to add yours for inclusion in future episodes, vote for the ones you want to see answered, and remember to keep them short and concise if you want your best chance of having them answered in under two minutes. The links for this week’s content are below: CITIZEN SPOTLIGHT Clifford_aka_Miku TOP 5: “Light Unit Breacher” by Nephenteso6 Albator’s “MPUV 4K Screenshot” “My Dream” by Escorbuto Lila87’s “Aegis Eclipse Wallpaper” MVP: “Trouble at Comm Array” by Zero Sense Przeczytaj całość
  13. Sean Tracy and Josh Herman host this week’s Around the Verse, which features an update from our German office and a Ship Shape segment focused on the Aegis Eclipse. And for info on becoming a subscriber, go to: Przeczytaj całość
  14. Q&A: Aegis Eclipse Greetings Citizens! Since the introduction of the Hull Series back in April 2015, every new concept ship reveal has had an accompanying Q&A post, where we spend a couple days collecting questions from you, pass those on to the relevant ship designer, and provide you the best answers we have available at that time. With the recent addition of Spectrum, we can now allow you to add your vote to the questions you most want to see answered. The questions included below are a combination of those that received the most votes, similar questions that were merged into a single instance, and those we felt we could comfortably answer at this stage in the Aegis Eclipse’s life. Now that the ship is concept complete, it will enter our development pipeline where many of the answers you see below will be fleshed out, and those missing will be determined and implemented. While it will still be some time before we see the Aegis Eclipse in game, we hope you’re as excited as we are as the game expands with the further development of stealth mechanics for the Star Citizen universe. As always, a special thanks to Geoffrey Coffin, John Crewe, Todd Papy and Ben Lesnick for their help in answering your questions. Let’s get to it. -DL What does “stealth” mean within the Star citizen universe? Stealth in Star Citizen resolves around being hard to detect via in-game systems, these being primarily radars and scanners. As mentioned previously in the Sabre Q&A, the Sabre and Eclipse are both built from the ground up around the concept of stealth whereas the Hornet Ghost was retrofitted to this mechanic. Not only does the specific hull design of the Sabre and Eclipse provide benefits to reduce their visibility on radar, but they are both equipped by default with Stealth-class items. The item/component classes we currently have are Military, Civilian, Industrial, Stealth and Competition. Stealth class items of each item type provide the lowest emissions (IR and EM) at the expense of raw output and durability. Other classes will have comparable benefits and weaknesses allowing players to mix and match items to tune their ship’s behavior. Ships like the Eclipse come default with all Stealth class items, whereas the Sabre comes with some Military and some Stealth and the Ghost has Civilian and Stealth. We’ll be discussing the different classes of items in-depth in the future. It’s said that the Eclipse will bring unique stealth components to the game. Will older stealth ships like the Sabre and Hornet Ghost be updated to include these stealth components, or are they specific only to the Eclipse? It is very rare that these items are hull locked and currently none of the default items (i.e. power plants and shield generators) are tied to a specific ship such as the Eclipse. As mentioned previously, we have the stealth class of items which provide significant benefits to signature reduction and applicable ships will either come default with these or be able to equip them. Wouldn’t Size 9 torpedoes in fighters be considered “game breaking” when the Retaliator already has S9 and the Polaris capital ship has S10? The Eclipse was designed from the start to carry S9’s, the tradeoff is it doesn’t carry much else and is neither very tough, nor agile. It’s not designed to be a dogfighter, but rather a very specialized bomber that wants to approach a target silently, fire its payload, and leave. The Eclipse carries three size 9 torpedoes, and two size 2 ballistic gatling weapons. These larger torpedoes take a while to lock on to smaller ships, and combined with its relative lack of agility, that will mean the Eclipse will have a tricky time trying to use them in a dogfight. The Eventual $330 Flight ready tag is quite expensive for a single-person ship and given how little detail we have at this stage. What is the intention behind the ship’s design that warrants the high tag that we may be missing at initial glance? For its size, the Eclipse punches far above its weight class with its ordnance armament. It’s capable of destroying large ships, and causing serious damage to capital ships. Its specialized loadout of stealth equipment and large torpedoes all contribute to its ability to perform this task. With regards to the announced future price, keep in mind that every Star Citizen concept ship is priced below its component value in the in-game economy. In the past, it was difficult to predict the final price with ships going through significant iterations between the concept and flight ready stages. With the ship pipeline functioning as it does today, we can now provide a solid estimate of future pricing. Will there be any civilian companies looking to retrofit this military craft’s torpedo ports allowing for stealth cargo running? A fun idea, but this is not something we’re currently exploring. Will the Eclipse torpedo bay be modular, so that the ship can be used for other purposes such as electronic warfare? This is not something currently planned. The Eclipse was designed around this sole purpose, while something like the Vanguard series will be more flexible with its modularity. Can the Eclipse carry anything other than 3xS9 torpedoes (like for instance a ton of regular missiles or multiples of smaller torpedoes like the S5 carried by the Gladiator)? Again, the Eclipse is an extremely specialized vessel, designed to excel at its intended task and role, so this is not something currently planned. What ship hangars will the Eclipse fit into? It’s a sizable ship, to be certain. While it cannot fit into the Polaris, it should be able to operate snugly out of a Javelin hangar. Can the Eclipse bomb both air-to-air AND air-to-ground? If you can lock on to the target, you can attack it with the torpedoes whether it is air-to-air or air-to-ground. What kind of quantum jumping range can we expect from this ship? The Eclipse currently sits in-between the Gladiator (essentially a carrier born torpedo bomber) and the Harbinger in terms of range, and is expected to stay around there. It doesn’t currently have a lot of fuel reserves so a single mission is the best plan of attack rather than daisy chaining a few together, where a Retaliator or Harbinger would fare better. Can a Terrapin pick up the trail of an approaching Eclipse (both in their default configuration) in time to warn a nearby fleet? It’s possible, but it won’t be easy for either ship. Terrapins are extremely strong at detecting signatures and whilst the Eclipse is very good at having low signatures, it still has one. With a Terrapin in a good location, with an operator on their toes they should be able to detect it but whether they have time to get the message across is a different problem entirely. What purpose does the Eclipse serve in the civilian market? Can the bay be retrofitted for carrying cargo or data storage modules, or some other use, or is this a dedicated bomber suited for private military contractor use only? There are no plans for swap-able bays, it is a dedicated bomber with that sole focus. What are the expected Speed and Agility levels of the Eclipse The Eclipse is currently planned to be pretty fast (in a straight line), having comparable speed to the Gladius, but it’s also not an agile ship. It’s currently planned to be comparable with the Gladiator for flight agility. How many Eclipse will it take to take down say a 890 Jump, Polaris or Idris? As always, we must preface this by reminding everyone that all things are subject to change during game development, but our current thinking about how this should currently play out is: A pair of Eclipses, going unnoticed attacking an Idris with its shields down and its defense turrets disabled can cripple the ship if they hit in the right areas. Attacking such a large target like this though would be fairly foolish with such a small attack force though once you factor in the overall shields and defensive capabilities of everyone involved. Sub Capital ships however are much more vulnerable to an Eclipse or two, whereas assaulting a capital ship would most likely require a first strike with an Eclipse or two followed by a heavier sustained assault with Retaliators, Gladiators or Harbingers. Is 2x fixed ballistic S2 really going to hurt anything significant? While the weapon compliment is only one component in the overall success of any dogfight, similar loadouts on other ships designed for that purpose can often be more effective than on a ship with a specialized focus like the Eclipse. Here, they function more as deterrent, or tool to finish off a crippled target, than an effective fighting loadout. The Eclipse isn’t supposed to be hanging around in a dogfight. This is a specialist ship with a very niche role: to deliver its devastating torpedo payload to unsuspecting targets. Considering the sensitive nature of this ship, will purchases of this ship be limited in game, like by reputation? Does the UEE try to prevent ships like this from falling into pirate hands? With the 2947 announcement, we consider the Eclipse to now be ‘for export,’ meaning that it can be sold to select groups outside the UEE military (including you). We anticipate there will be any number of limitations in the game world including both the number of bombers produced at any given time and other factors relating to reputation. It seems unlikely that the UEE would sell bombers directly to known pirates or other criminals, but it’s also easy to imagine other ways for such individuals to acquire military spec’d ships. How does the Eclipse place among other bombers, specifically in range, speed, maneuverability, armament, survivability, role flexibility, and jump capability? Range can be a tricky one to quantify, but basing it on duration and distance we see it as follows: Polaris, Retaliator, Harbinger, Eclipse, Gladiator. The first three all have support for long duration trips with on-board facilities while the Eclipse and Gladiator do not. As speeds will naturally change over the course of development, the current ordering in terms of max SCM speed, going from fastest to slowest in a straight line acceleration, is as follows: Eclipse, Gladiator, Harbinger, Retaliator, Polaris Maneuverability will be the Eclipse’s “Achilles’ Heel” and is squarely at the bottom of the smaller ships in this trait, with both the Gladiator and Harbinger outmaneuvering it. Armament is another trait not easily compared straight across against other ships, as it obviously packs a devastating punch with its torpedoes, but once those are gone it’s will be considerably outgunned if you choose to stick around without re-arming. If you intended to hang around after attacking then the Eclipse is not the ship for this and a Gladiator or Harbinger are much more suited to that role. Survivability also comes into play here with the Eclipse being less durable than either the Gladiator or Harbinger, currently expected to have a similar durability to that of a 300i. Basically, if you use it for it’s intended role, we expect the Eclipse to excel above others, but deviating outside of that the Eclipse will not fare well with its lack of cargo space, a single seat with no interior and limited weaponry. The Harbinger will allow you to maintain a longer time in the ‘verse and the Gladiator will pack a more rounded punch. To summarize the intended roles between the four bombers (Polaris excluded): The Gladiator is the short range bomber, capable of absorbing and dishing out damage. The Eclipse is the mid range stealth bomber, capable of sneaking behind enemy lines and delivering a high damage strike, but should not stay in combat due to its defensive shortcomings. The Harbinger is the mid to long range endurance bomber, carrying more weapons and armament than the Gladiator and able to take more of a pounding and survive deeper into space, but without the stealth capabilities of the Eclipse. The Retaliator is the dedicated long range bomber, able to carry the most ordnance, the most men and the most weaponry to defend itself via its turrets. It can sustain itself and its crew much deeper in the verse and is ideal for striking targets a long way away. This is a good opportunity to mention that we are well aware of many in the community’s issues with the Retaliator (capacity, turret behavior, layouts, etc) and whilst we can’t commit to changes presently in the short term, it is on our radar and we’ll be reviewing at some point in the future. Will I be able to purchase a large cloth to keep this covered in my hanger? While the Historical Truth Act has permitted an unprecedented release of previously-classified UEEN military information (including the existence of the Eclipse bomber) it has NOT authorized any discussion of the Crusader Industries B419-AR Tactical Stealth Utility Tarp (TSUT.) Any discussion of its capabilities or availability should be reported to the nearest Advocacy agent. Przeczytaj całość
  15. Senior Gameplay Engineer Mark Abent addresses a bug that has the shotgun recoiling before its deadly projectiles are fired. Can Mark smash this bug and improve the weapon’s accuracy? Przeczytaj całość
  16. The Baker Backup Start Transmission Howdy, folks. Craig Burton here, coming through loud and clear with all the important news haulers need to know. This is another edition of Clean Shot. Fair warning everyone, we’re desperately over capacity on valuable intel this episode. That means Skinny’s detailed assessment of Juno Starwerk’s latest take on their classic Endurance industrial-class power plant might get bumped to our next show. I hate to do it since I know many of you are waiting to hear how this model stacks up against its predecessors, but Skinny’s got a lot to say about the subtle tweaks they made and I’ll be damned if I’m gonna cut him short. The reason we’re so tight on time today is because, well, Skinny booked us a hell of a show. Funny how that works, huh? I’ll be speaking with military historian Lavern Carlin about the Eclipse, which the UEE revealed last Friday through the Historical Truth Act. Now that we know this stealth bomber exists, and will soon to be in the hands of Citizens, we’ll find out what haulers need to know about its capabilities. That way you can not only stay safe from them, but also maybe even use one of ‘em to your advantage. Remember, the type of ship you hire for a protection run is, I would argue, almost as important as the pilot hired. Now I know there’s different schools of thought on this, but no matter where you stand, we can all agree that it’s important to know what your options are. But first, let’s turn our attention to the growing brouhaha in the Baker System, where haulers have been reporting a dramatic increase in wait times at the customs stations checking ships coming from Xi’an space into the UEE. Seems there’s been a huge uptick in not only the number of scans but also the depth of the searches being performed. Rumors have been spinning out of control, with some claiming that the increase may be due to a classified security concern while others believe the reasons behind it are entirely political. Recently, the Senate announced that it had scheduled a vote on HuXa, Imperator Costigan’s proposed Human-Xi’an Trade Initiative, for Tuesday June 6 SET. With that date quickly approaching, seems politicians and experts of all kinds are flocking to spectrum shows to debate the pros and cons of increased trade with the Xi’an. The recent customs issues in Baker have only fueled the flames on both sides of the argument, while some are even saying that the HuXa vote may be the cause of the crackdown in the first place. Let’s set the potential causes aside for a moment and focus on the effects. With the tightening of Baker’s customs security entering its sixth day, the backup’s been causing all kinds of headaches for haulers across the Empire. Those of you who don’t work Baker might not realize just how vital it is to our trade with the Xi’an. Let me explain it this way. If you’ve got a Hull-E full of valuable ore from a Xi’an mining operation, and you need to get it back into the UEE, there are only three large jump points you can use. Two of them are located in Baker. This has big rig haulers watching their profits evaporate while sitting in long customs lines, and even has people frantically offloading cargo to different ships that can fit through smaller jump points. This morning there were even reports of CTR stations in a number of systems suffering from fuel shortages and depleted store shelves — all because CTR is owned by the Jysho Corporation, a Xi’an company. The slowdown has forced station owners to seek out local vendors to restock items that would normally come from Xi’an sources. Here to discuss with us exactly what’s going on is Jasper Grzenda. He’s the spokesperson for Baker’s Public Sector Union Local #1011 and also a Customs Bureau shift supervisor within the system. He’s been in the thick of it for the past few days, and hopefully has some answers for us. Thank you for taking the time to talk to us today. I know a lot of haulers out there are wondering exactly what’s going on in Baker. What’s the first thing you would tell them? Jasper Grzenda: First, thanks for having me on, Craig. If you’re a hauler sitting in one of Baker’s long customs lines, then let me apologize for the inconvenience. I can guarantee you that the Customs Bureau agents currently working the jumps to Pallas and Hadur are doing their very best to get you cleared in a timely manner. Let’s cut to the chase. What’s going on here, Jasper? Jasper Grzenda: As you mentioned, Baker is an essential part of Humanity’s trade relationship with the Xi’an. Every day we process more ships and cargo going to and from the Xi’an Empire than for any other system. It’s a massive operation with massive responsibilities, chief among them to ensure we don’t let anything in or out of the Empire that shouldn’t cross our border. Come on, Jasper, there are hardworking haulers who are getting boned because of the sudden and unannounced changes at Baker’s customs stations. You know as well as anyone that haulers carefully plan and time their routes. That’s how we turn a profit. Doubling or tripling time spent waiting in one of Baker’s customs lines has messed with a lot of good people. Jasper Grzenda: Trust me, I can sympathize, but we all have tough jobs to do. If anyone knows what it’s like to be overworked and underpaid, it’s the good folks of the Local #1011. Traffic through these two customs stations in Baker has increased significantly over the past few years, yet our budget has barely changed. Everyone here’s just trying to do their job with the resources they have. Guess I’m more curious about the sudden shift in how you’re doing the job. Some trade groups told me that scans and ship inspections have almost tripled over the past few days. Jasper Grzenda: And yesterday, the Pallas customs station broke its previous record for the total amount of contraband seized in a day. The increased scans might have slowed things down, but you can’t argue with the results. It’s a silver lining, for sure, but does it really justify this entire mess? Jasper Grzenda: Craig, I understand your frustration, but, if I can be blunt, you’ve got a bit of narrow vision here. If you were in system, I’d invite you to the Pallas customs station to see all the illegal goods and contraband we confiscated yesterday. The crates of undeclared weapons destined for who knows where. The shelves overflowing with e’tâm that otherwise would be poisoning our youth and addicting them to a substance that we know next to nothing about. Is tackling these problems not worth the minor headaches being caused by the backlog? Hey, I’ve got no problems with the increased enforcement, only that its execution was so poorly managed. You guys dramatically increased the scan and search rates without bringing in additional agents to support it. Why would you do this if you didn’t have the staff to handle it? Jasper Grzenda: Because if we waited until we were properly staffed, then it’d never happen. “Extra resources” and “overtime pay” are not part of the Custom Bureau’s vocabulary. Our budget is already stretched dangerously thin, so bringing in extra agents to expedite the backup just isn’t an option. So why do it at all? Jasper Grzenda: We’ve been told many times that a lack of personnel and resources is not an excuse for failing to do our jobs. So we’re doing our damn jobs, Craig. I just find the timing of all this to be very interesting. Jasper Grzenda: How so? Well, this stricter enforcement policy went into effect shortly after the Senate announced a date to vote on HuXa. Jasper Grzenda: Just because two things happen around the same time doesn’t mean they’re related. But the Public Sector Union Local #1011, of which you’re a member, has some skin in that game, doesn’t it? The group has been extremely vocal in their opposition to the bill. That’s a fair characterization, right? Jasper Grzenda: Absolutely. We have to be. Why’s that? Jasper Grzenda: Because Baker lacks Senate representation, so there’s no one on Earth advocating directly for us. That makes it our job to bang the drum about what’s not working around here. So, you can see how trouble at the Baker customs stations right now might draw attention to your cause and, say, get you booked on shows like this to push your agenda. Jasper Grzenda: I’m only here ’cause you guys commed us. Because of all the trouble your Customs Bureau is causing over what looks like a political dispute. Jasper Grzenda: See, this is one thing that rubs me the wrong way about the rest of the Empire. No one pays much mind to Baker until an issue arises. Well, let me just say that if HuXa passes, you all will have to get used to this. Used to what? Jasper Grzenda: Long lines going to and from Baker. Some experts are predicting traffic through the system could as much as double if HuXa passes. Aren’t there measures in the bill that would address and ease your budgetary issues? Jasper Grzenda: Yeah, but no more than a nine or ten percent increase. To put that in perspective, that much would barely cover the cost of getting us out of this current situation. It’s not even close to what we need to handle the kinds of traffic increases we’re talking about. If HuXa passes, then this might very well be the new normal, and haulers should probably adjust their timetables accordingly. Then we’ll just have to find other solutions. Bonded cargo. Trusted hauler programs. Hell, might even be a good time for us to look harder for a few more large jumps into Xi’an space. But after being in this business as long as I have, longer lines or not, all I know is trying to limit trade and commerce is never a good solution. We need to take a quick commercial break. There’s more with Jasper Grzenda around the bend, so keep Clean Shot locked in. Przeczytaj całość
  17. Greetings Citizens I hope you all had a fantastic weekend. Things are business as usual around here as everyone is focused on preparing for the imminent release of Star Citizen Alpha 3.0. Last Friday, after a series of… mischievous leaks, we began a new concept sale for the Aegis Eclipse. You can find out everything you need to know about this now declassified ship here. With that, let’s take a look at this week. On Tuesday, the Lore Team will release another installment in one of their many continuing series. The Star Citizen Universe is rich with history and a past/future worth exploring. If you find yourself easily immersed in a good story, fascinated by the design of Star Citizen, or just hungry for more information, these posts are made for you. On Wednesday, Mark Abent is back for another episode of “Bugsmashers!” Have you ever wondered what goes in to finding/fixing a bug you may have encountered in the Star Citizen universe? If so, this show is not one to miss! And if you are interested in learning more about the Aegis Eclipse, Wednesday also brings us a detailed Q&A which covers the questions you have been asking on Spectrum. On Thursday, Around the Verse checks in with Foundry 42 Frankfurt for an in-depth look at what the studio has been up to in the last month. I won’t speak for the rest of you, but something about Brian Chambers always gets me excited! As a reminder, there will be no Happy Hour this Friday, as we are on a bi-weekly schedule now, but we’ll see you next week. That’s all for this week, we’ll see you in the ‘Verse! Tyler “Zyloh” Witkin Lead Community Manager The Weekly Community Content Schedule MONDAY, MAY 22ND, 2017 Citizens of the Stars ( TUESDAY, MAY 23RD, 2017 Weekly Lore Post ( WEDNESDAY, MAY 24TH, 2017 Bugsmashers! ( Aegis Eclipse Q&A THURSDAY, MAY 25TH, 2017 Around the Verse ( FRIDAY, MAY 26TH, 2017 Vault Update RSI Newsletter Community Spotlight: May 22nd, 2017 – Music Citizen This week’s theme is “Music Citizen,” highlighting some of the original compositions and music videos from the Star Citizen community. Don’t forget to submit your content to our Community Hub for a chance at seeing your content here! Big Bennys Noodles Music Video by Z-A-L Z-A-L has created his own rendtion of the very popular Big Bennys Music Video. Full Video “Space Fleas” by jakemartins “Space Fleas” is the second video production of Mustang Intergalactic, a YouTube channel highlighting J Matt Wallace, Jake Wallace, and Brian B Barrett’s desire to create music and music videos based on community interaction and lore surrounding Star Citizen. Full Video Welcome to the Verse by LilAdamXD A composition written by LilAdamXD on how they imagine the game will be once the game is fully released, and this is sort of a musical take on that feeling of excitement and awe. Full Video Przeczytaj całość
  18. Welcome to Citizens of the Stars, our new weekly program exclusively about you, the Star Citizen Community. Whether through bug reports on the issue council, feedback on the forums, or the creation of content inspired by the game, Star Citizen is only possible because of the community. Citizens of the Stars not only highlights these contributions, but also puts a dev in the hotseat for a round of Quantum Questions, which addresses some fun facts about the dev and game. In the Citizen Spotlight is Streamer Captain Richard and his recent feature on the front page of Twitch playing Star Citizen. After that, don’t miss Associate Writer Adam Wieser in the Quantum Questions hot seat! Remember, many of the questions used are taken from our Star Citizen Subscribers in this thread here. Don’t forget to add yours for inclusion in future episodes, vote for the ones you want to see answered, and remember to keep them short and concise if you want your best chance of having them answered in under two minutes. The links for this week’s content are below: CITIZEN SPOTLIGHT Captain_Richard TOP 5: Squadron Hangar Concept by Alex_S189 Pepson’s 4K Screenshot Gallery Lego Banu Ships by pelcki Peter666 and his 325A VW Jetta MVP: Star Citizen: The Journey So Far Przeczytaj całość
  19. Jump Point Now Available! Attention development subscribers: the April 2017 issue of Jump Point is now available in your subscription area. This month’s Jump Point features the development of Aegis Eclipse! That, plus a look at Ascension Astro, a visit to the Gliese System, behind the scenes of Spectrum and an all-new chapter a Star Citizen serial from lead writer Dave Haddock! Grab your copy today. Interested in becoming a development subscriber? You can learn more here. Przeczytaj całość
  20. Read Full Terms Project Eclipse Armed with multiple torpedoes and state-of-the-art scan diffusing technology, the Aegis Eclipse has been the UEE’s best, and least known, protection. It is the Navy’s top choice in border defense and a preferred first-strike weapon against the Vanduul. Now, in an effort to increase transparency with the Xi’an, the Eclipse is declassified and available for purchase by Citizens. Achieving Stealth In 2930, the UEE Navy was in need of a more advanced stealth bomber to use specifically in defensive operations against the Vanduul. Military casualties were mounting in cases of direct combat with Vanduul capital ships. The Navy needed a ship that could strike quickly before the enemy detected their presence or soften up strategic targets in anticipation of a larger attack. Aegis Dynamics won that bid. The arrowing design, massive firepower, and cutting-edge clandestine technology of their design easily surpassed the competition. The Eclipse’s advanced hull system is adaptable to environments thanks to multiple wing configurations that adjust to space or atmospheric flight. After years of extensive field tests, the Aegis Eclipse went into service in 2932. Since then, the Eclipse has served as the unseen sentinel of our borders. Now, it is time to recognize the Eclipse’s many years of service. About The Concept Sale The Aegis Eclipse is available for purchase at a Concept Sale price of $275 and War Bond price of $250. By purchasing this ship, you are supporting the development of Star Citizen. Every dollar earned from Concept Sales goes directly towards creating the Best Damn Space Sim Ever. The developers at CIG appreciate your support. War Bond SKUs include a unique serial number, an additional in-game poster featuring the Project Eclipse logo and an alternate ship skin featuring an alternate ice blue-and-matte black livery used by the UEEN. Funding from War Bond sales goes directly to the ‘war effort’ with funding going to support and enhance the game development process. The Eclipse sale will run through Friday, June 2nd. The loaner ship will be the Aegis Retaliator bomber, with additional access to the Anvil Gladiator for use in Arena Commander. The flight-ready price for the Eclipse is expected to be $330. Aegis Eclipse Sale War Bond Issuing Serial Stamps 1-100 The Eclipse Unveiled The secret is out! Discover why the Aegis Eclipse is the UEE Navy’s premier stealth bomber. Open the Magazine or Download Click To Read Przeczytaj całość
  21. Adam Wieser travels to the Nemo System and dishes all the drama over when the system was discovered. Remember that you can always explore the Star Citizen Universe yourself in our web-based Ark Star Map. Przeczytaj całość
  22. ZERO-G GEAR HEADS ZERO-G GEAR HEADS FORUMS > MILITARY SPACESHIPS > RUMORS HISTORICAL TRUTH ACT: SHIP REVEAL??? Posted: 2947.05.09, 15:24 SET Word around the campfire is that the UEE is prepping another big release of information through the Historical Truth Act. Right now, no one’s confirming what will be included, but there’s a ton of speculation that a super-secret ship is going to be part of it. Can anyone here confirm or deny what I’ve been hearing? I’m just dying to know what kind of awesome tech the Navy has been sitting on. With all these near mil-spec ships flying around thanks to Militia Mobilization Initiative, you’d expect the UEEN to have a few more surprises up their sleeves, right? Got to have some way to keep us rabble in check =) -TurretMasterBlaster ____________________________________________ Posted: 2947.05.09, 16:11 SET I heard this too, TMB! I’m dying to know what beast the Navy’s been sitting on all these years. Fingers crossed for some Messer Murder Monstrosity. Can’t wait to find out! -LastSquad333 ____________________________________________ Posted: 2947.05.09, 21:54 SET if theres a new ship reveal coming soon through HTA, i guarantee that its an aegis ship. they were basically like messers personal designers. -KimzAllRight ____________________________________________ Posted: 2947.05.10, 02:36 SET Wow! How cool is it that Imperator Costigan checks these forums. I mean, who else in the entire UEE has the authority to confirm an Aegis ship will be a part of the Historical Truth Act reveal without facing reprisals for revealing classified information? -SirFrancis ____________________________________________ Posted: 2947.05.10, 02:38 SET its called speculating. thats like the hole point of this thread. if you dont like it, go hang out somewhere else. -KimzAllRight ____________________________________________ Posted: 2947.05.10, 02:41 SET Speculation is fine, I’m just sick of everyone coming in here trying to act like they know something. If you’re going to say it’s an Aegis, how about some proof? ( Also, it’s ‘whole point,’ not ‘hole point.’ S/NS. Total grammar fiend. ) -SirFrancis ____________________________________________ Posted: 2947.05.10, 20:05 SET Speaking of Costigan! Don’t know if any of you watch Showdown, but they had him on and I think he mentioned the ship. < QUOTE > COSTIGAN: What I can say is that a number of long classified military projects, including the rumored Project Eclipse and Operation Deadbolt, will be retired and details released through the Historical Truth Act. < /QUOTE > Anyone know what these secret projects are? Is one of them the ship? -DanceSoFine ____________________________________________ Posted: 2947.05.10, 23:41 SET Actually, if the big reveal is Project Eclipse, I may know what it is … I can’t say too much, but I work at a data center that does storage for some big projects doing archival clean up. There was some poorly shot classified naval footage that was labeled Eclipse that I did a scrub on recently. Had this old Naval base out in the middle of nowhere on Hyperion. I looked it up and technically, it’s ‘decommissioned,’ and it definitely looks that way, but I think they have it classified that way so no one has a reason to stop by. Anyways, the footage looks like handheld vid. There must have been a helluva dust storm when they shot it because even after cleanup the frame wasn’t steady at that distance. From what I could make out, the ship definitely didn’t match any ship I know about. The front tail of the vid said UEEN Bomber Command, so my guess is they caught someone filming their secret bomber and confiscated the footage. Sorry I can’t show you the vid. I would, but I’m pretty sure I’d lose my job … -BomberBoy2783 ____________________________________________ Posted: 2947.05.11, 07:41 SET Woah! Sweet! What’s this thing look like? -TurretMasterBlaster ____________________________________________ Posted: 2947.05.11, 08:22 SET Yeah, what an awesome totally not made up story! /s First Kimz and now you, BB2783. This forum has turned into bullshit. If this vid really exists, I’ll give you my 2783 Tali. It’s fairly obvious that you don’t already have one. If you did, you wouldn’t have such a gauche handle as “BomberBoy2783.” -SirFrancis ____________________________________________ PRIVATE MESSAGE Recipients: SirFrancis Posted: 2947.05.11, 10:40 SET It’s on SF! You have no idea who you’re messing with. Just did a little digging on you, Nathan, and confirmed that you have a 2783 Tali registered to you. Now I’m set on proving you wrong. You’re right about one thing, though. I don’t have a 2783 Tali. Just a 2550! Your ship is gonna look so good in my hangar soon. One thing. If I show you this footage you got to promise that it stays between us. My ass would be toast if anyone back at work could trace it back to me. -BomberBoy2783 ____________________________________________ PRIVATE MESSAGE Recipients: BomberBoy2783 Posted: 2947.05.11, 13:05 SET Oh, look who learned how to hire an infoagent to dig up basic intel on someone? I can’t believe you’re actually putting effort into this. Sure I promise not to show it to anyone. Especially since it doesn’t exist. At this point, I’m fully expecting you to try and pass off some shitty vid with a model ship in it as the real deal. -SirFrancis ____________________________________________ PRIVATE MESSAGE Recipients: SirFrancis Posted: 2947.05.14, 05:39 SET Bet you thought I’d gone away, didn’t you? Took a bit of elbow grease, but look what I managed to grab from the office! Now that I’ve produced the vid, you’ve gotta produce the Tali. I’ve got a few associates that are familiar with the 2783s. Let me know when I should send them by. If you don’t schedule a time by tomorrow, then I’ll have them show up unannounced. The choice is yours. -BomberBoy2783 ____________________________________________ PRIVATE MESSAGE Recipients: SirFrancis Posted: 2947.05.15, 15:55 SET Asshole! How could you release the vid! Don’t think you won’t pay for this … -BomberBoy2783 ____________________________________________ PRIVATE MESSAGE Recipients: BomberBoy2783 Posted: 2947.05.16, 07:44 SET Whoops … I wonder what happened. Did that vid you steal suddenly appear all over spectrum? That’s tough luck on your part. Didn’t your mom ever teach you not to trust strangers? -SirFrancis Przeczytaj całość
  23. Greetings Citizens Today we are releasing another episode of Citizens of the Stars, our weekly show dedicated to all of the amazing content creators in the ‘Verse. Our Spotlight guest is Alysianah, a long-time game blogger who has a couple different shows on YouTube. After that, ship designer Josh Coons tries his luck at becoming Quantum Question champion. Find out of he is successful by watching the video here On Tuesday, tune in for the regular Comm-Link Lore update. This time, they’re going to be talking all about [OFFICIALLY REDACTED AT THE REQUEST OF UEEN BOMBER COMMAND.] As you can tell, you won’t want to miss it! On Wednesday, Loremaker’s Guide to the Galaxy returns! Writer Adam Wieser travels to the Nemo System and dishes all the drama over when the system was discovered. On Thursday, Eric Keiron Davis is back to give you an update from the LA Studio on Around the Verse, our flagship weekly broadcast where we showcase the latest in Star Citizen’s continuing development. To wrap up the week, we have a day jam-packed full of excitement! To start, Happy Hour Gamedev invites Josh Herman to create another creature live with your input, but only if you tune in live at If you remember the last time Josh was on Happy Hour Gamedev, then you already know this is not one to miss!. We also have a top secret Vault Update and new issue of Jump Point exclusively for Subscribers. That’s all from me this week, I’ll see you in the ‘Verse! Tyler “Admiral Sloth” Nolin Community Manager The Weekly Community Content Schedule MONDAY, MAY 15TH, 2017 Citizens of the Stars ( TUESDAY, MAY 16TH, 2017 Weekly Lore Post ( WEDNESDAY, MAY 17TH, 2017 Loremaker’s Guide to the Galaxy ( THURSDAY, MAY 18TH, 2017 Around the Verse ( FRIDAY, MAY 19TH, 2017 Happy Hour Gamedev ( Vault Update Jump Point RSI Newsletter Community Spotlight: May 15th, 2017 – Machinima Citizen This week’s theme is Machinima Citizen,” highlighting some of the beautiful short stories and movies in Star Citizen Alpha 2.6. Don’t forget to submit your content to our Community Hub for a chance at seeing your content here! Visit the Community Hub A Good Friend by Sonic_Temples Part 3 of the series follows Captain and K.A.R.L. during the good times and the bad at the VFG in this dark narrative. Full Video The Creature From Outer Yela by deadweight Space is a scary place when you are flying solo, and stranded with no hope of rescue. Nothing can prepare you for… The creature from outer Yela! Full Video Fight and Flight Fan Trailer by TheSamon TheSamon creates a fan trailer for Star Citizen utilizing some historical footage to remind us of Humanity’s journey to the stars. Full Video Przeczytaj całość
  24. Welcome to Citizens of the Stars, our new weekly program exclusively about you, the Star Citizen Community. Whether through bug reports on the issue council, feedback on the forums, or the creation of content inspired by the game, Star Citizen is only possible because of the community. Citizens of the Stars not only highlights these contributions, but also puts a dev in the hotseat for a round of Quantum Questions, which addresses some fun facts about the dev and game. In the Citizen Spotlight is Youtuber Alysianah Noire and her two fan shows, Casual Citizen & Star Citizen Nightbus. Don’t miss Josh Coons in the Quantum Questions hot seat! Remember, many of the questions used are taken from our Star Citizen Subscribers in this thread here. Don’t forget to add yours for inclusion in future episodes, vote for the ones you want to see answered, and remember to keep them short and concise if you want your best chance of having them answered in under two minutes. The links for this week’s content are below: CITIZEN SPOTLIGHT Alysianah Noire’s Adventures in Gaming TOP 5: Kareah by BSA_FRUSTMASTER AstroSam and the Flight of the Starfarers Star Kitten 3D Model by Hlao Dowlphin and Ejection Seat Pinball MVP: Darjanator and the Mark Hammil in Gladius MFD Przeczytaj całość
  25. Monthly Studio Report: April 2017 Greetings Citizens! Welcome to our April Monthly Report! Below you’ll find a compilation of the ATV studio updates. You can easily find out what the developers in Los Angeles, Frankfurt, Austin, and the UK have been up to for the past four weeks in both written and video form. And the studio update cycle starts all over again next with the LA offices. Check it out on ATV! CIG Los Angeles CLOUD IMPERIUM: LOS ANGELES ENGINEERING Soon, all new ships will have a Heat and Power component now that the team has finished designing pipes and begun implementing their basic structure. This will manage the flow of respective elements to allow individual component contribution to ship behavior. For example, coolers now contribute to how much heat the system can handle, rather than being statically defined by the heat sink. The old system in the new ships is being replaced with this new management system. After this is done, the team must implement the minute details of each component influencing one another. For example, coolers not only affect the overheat temperature limit, they also offer IR signature masking. Heat sinks will no longer simply define the temperature at which components overheat and shutdown. The heat will ramp up to its desired temperature, rather than being generated instantaneously. The Purchase Transaction system has been re-implemented with a new replicated function system called Remote Methods. This system will decrease the number of calls to the server, which should make purchasing things a bit more responsive. Next, the team will improve the Try-On mode and the clientside update to persistent data after purchases. The team is also working on Object Container editing. When creating a gameplay level, the level is built with a combination of Assets and ObjectContainers. Originally, ObjectContainers had to be built in the dedicated ObjectContainer level, which, unfortunately, made the contents of the ObjectContainer only editable in the actual objectContainer level. In other words, when designers are building levels with ObjectContainers, but want to modify the contents of that ObjectContainer, the only way to do that is exit the current level, open the ObjectContainer level, do some tuning, save, export ,and leave. Then, the designer would have to move back to the level. What the team has done now is allowed the designer to edit the contents of a ObjectContainer, save and export all while inside the level. This creates a much better experience for our design team and saves time. Since the previous update about the ultimate light switch, the Light Group entity also has several new features. Its light state can be changed by Track View, which is very useful for cinematics. It allows for individual directional lights to now rotate with a simple property. This was a process that previously required Flow Graph. Light Groups can now replace the antiquated prefabs that vehicle external lights have been using. Next, the team aims to get Light Groups on a vehicle to rely on the vehicle’s power in order to control all lights as well as interior devices such as doors. Lastly, the team has focused on the control manager. This system will automatically give authority over items across the game and will allow players to dictate the control of an item and its subitems. In the past, there was a system prototype for vehicles that was hardcoded. This meant that item connections would have to be manually defined by the designer, for instance, a particular seat always controlled a specific set of items. Now, the control manager will be able to connect to any entity. For example, a designer adds a control manager to a turret and then weapons are added, the turret can then be controlled by an AI module or by an Operator Seat. This can also be added to a vehicle with either an AI module or the operator seat. This framework is universal. It isn’t restricted to weapon systems. If a player wanted to control doors on a space station and there are terminals with an operator seat, it will link to the player and then the player can operate whatever it controls.The control manager will allow for multicrew play, depending on who is in each seat. The team also added this to dataforge so designers no longer have to manually state what each controller does. The system now knows what each control operates. With a set priority, it would manage itself. However, if the designer still wants to, they can give that extra level of control or just let the system function as it wants to. SHIP ART AND DESIGN The ship team has completed the whitebox phase on the Anvil Terrapin and moved into greybox phase, which includes final geo on the pilot seat, the cockpit, the main engines, landing gear, and housing as well as basic rigs and animation for some of the features. The team has brought the whitebox into the engine to get it up and flying for testing. The team is working on the RSI Aurora’s cockpit, controls, MFD screens, and sleeping quarters as well as general internal polish, such as poms, decals, and LODs. Meanwhile, the QA team has been testing new ships in the pipeline and starting on the new animation pipeline. Their biggest undertaking is testing the new planetary tech on moons, such as Daymar. TECH CONTENT One of the biggest challenges when dealing with multiple asset pipelines is maintaining consistency across every asset. To ensure such consistency, the asset development teams need to create and maintain a shared, unified library. This means the tech art team is constantly evaluating and auditing materials to achieve the best and most efficient result. Animation is like any other asset. It has a certain memory footprint that needs to be streamed in and out. The DBA, or database of animations, is an optimized animation container comprised of hundreds of animations compressed down to a fraction of their typical size on disk, similar to our Object Container tech, but for animations. Splitting them up logically is important because the speed of streaming will be affected depending on the size of the DBA. For example, a locomotion set can be fairly heavy as it is comprised of hundreds of animations (walking, running, turning, idling, etc.), causing the streaming of a large file to take a few frames. If a character slides prior to the animation beginning, this is an indication that the DBA is too large. So, tech animation developed a tool to create, manage, and sort the animations within DBAs. This month, engineering, tech art, and DevOps teamed up to automatically output and track errors and warnings associated with certain assets for easy assignment, better visibility, and quicker turnaround. This affects everything from needed fixes to undefined behaviors that could negatively impact the gameplay experience and performance speed. Implementing this tech should alleviate the performance hit from costly asset errors. With the implementation of Item 2.0, the Tech Content team needed to create a specific loadout editor to handle the characters as they will become fundamentally different than the characters in the base engine. Now that it’s been used in production, there have been some major improvements like new icons, documentation, and general workflow improvements that allow for more developers to get up-to-speed quickly on the usage of this tool. It will also make creating loadouts easier and faster. They also created a new Skinning Tool to reduce turnaround by taking the CGA format (which is a hierarchy of animated meshes, collisions, and constrained pistons) and turning it into a unified set of skins with LODs that are bound to an animated skeleton with physics. This tool will not only allow for more complex rigging setups and LODs, but also reduce turnaround for skinning complex setups and improve the overall process. ANIMATION Since hands tend to be a third of the screen space in a typical first-person shooter, they must be at a higher quality level. An interesting byproduct of unifying the first and third person is that, without a separate asset to represent first-person hands, all character assets must be to the level of a typical first-person shooter arm asset. Meaning, the quality should be to the correct level of fidelity and the hand weights should allow for more accurate animations. The new hand updates done by the rigging team allows for better deformation and drives the eye forward to connect with the weapon, which also lends itself to the use of longer weapons. TECH ART A critical feature required for characters is that the weapons move to their designated positions accurately when players switch armor. Tech Art worked within the confines of the skeleton extension system to develop an override technique that utilizes the correct helper positions based on the asset. This means attachments will now inherit positions in real time as armor pieces are attached and detached. Also, in terms of attachments, the most complex character to date is the Heavy Marine. A fully equipped Heavy Marine has the most physical attachments, or weapons, than any of our other characters. This presented some unique challenges in trying to fit four grenades, eight magazines, two medpens, two gadgets, one side arm, and two weapons onto a single character. CHARACTER TEAM The character team is making solid progress across handfuls of different outfits, uniforms, and aliens. The OMC undersuit has completed its high poly pass, making it ready for in-game mesh and texturing. Our Heavy Outlaw has completed its in-game mesh and will move into texturing, rigging and implementation. In Squadron 42, the team is working on major characters to minor background roles. The Marine BDU has moved through texturing and onto its final stages. A medical rep character has finished up her high poly phase and will move to in-game modeling. Concepts for the Xi’an and Banu are near completion. Our newest quest givers, Ruto and Miles Eckhart, will be in-game soon. NARRATIVE The narrative team dipped their toes in a lot of different pools in the last month. On the alien front, they worked with the design and AI teams in Frankfurt to brainstorm Vanduul behaviors and delved even deeper into the Banu to flesh out more of the civilization to help with the Defender brochure. Dave and Will also appeared on a Subscriber’s Town Hall to field questions about aliens in general. Otherwise, although there were the usual weekly needs (News Updates, marketing blurbs and Jump Point), the bulk of the time was spent working on 3.0. They synced with the UK designers to talk out mission types and the art teams to help figure out ways to dress the various surface outposts that you’ll find around the moons. CIG Austin CLOUD IMPERIUM: AUSTIN DESIGN The team has made progress implementing Commodity Trading in 3.0. Since several things need to come together on the tech side first, the programmers worked furiously on the Shopping Code Rewrite, the Commodity Kiosk, and Ship Persistence so Commodity Trading can be possible. Also for 3.0, the designers finished the first batch of usable requests for the first round of shops. These are created so the 4 required disciplines (Design, Animation, Tech Art and System Design) understand each usable’s intended purpose and functionality. Once all the required assets are created, they will come back for design to do the final hookup. Also, the first mission giver experience is being plotted for 3.0. Getting Miles Eckhart, who you met in last year’s Gamescom demo, into the game is the primary focus while work on Ruto, our criminal fixer, is also proceeding nicely. The team worked on giving Eckhart a constant stream of missions and enabling players to earn reputation and higher tier mission options. Lastly, the team did a breakdown of the Levski landing zone, which included how players will smuggle cargo into the city; the placement of the mission givers and their content; the factions within Levski; and the political aims of these factions. ART On the Art side, the team is completing the damage model pass on the Cutlass Black rework. By far, the most time-consuming part during this phase is creating the intricate trellis work on the parts that get blown off, like the wings and the body. This requires working closely with Tech Art to make sure the ship breaks apart and receives surface hull damage in the correct areas. Once we complete the damage phase, all that’s left to make are the LODs. The team also worked on the lighting for one of the Squadron 42 stations and are also in process of converting existing setups to use the new light group system. This system will allow a much greater degree of control for the look of a room under different gameplay circumstances – such as when the power is on or off, when emergency lighting has been activated, or when gravity has been disabled. All of these changes will not only add a dynamic quality to the lighting but also make the environments feel responsive to player input. Initial testing has begun on a new volumetric fog solution, which lets every light cast volumetric fog, with the hope that it will allow many more high-quality atmospheric effects. PU ANIMATION The PU Animation Team updated all the existing usable animations to the new robust system. This will save on memory footprint and create a larger number of unique animations more quickly. The team also did a quick pick up shoot to capture lifting crates of different sizes from different heights, operating door controls, and various other transition animations. They also worked on picking up two handed objects as part of the Looting system. This allows more object interaction in-game and opens the possibility for more missions and activities. If a player sees a box on the ground and wants it, they will be able to pick it up, carry it back to their ship, and put it in their cargo hold for transport back to their hanger. SHIP ANIMATION Ship Animation wrapped up the reworked version of the Drake Cutlass, as well as new Zero-G enter-exit animations for the Drake Dragonfly. They also improved the cockpit experience by adding hit reactions, button presses, and updated cockpit layouts. ENGINEERING The Backend Services Engineering team has been bringing Diffusion online. The more trivial services, such as Friends, Analytics, Authentication, and Presence, were converted from legacy architecture to fully Diffusionized services running with Ooz. Next, we will start to convert larger and more complex services like Persistence Cache, Game Server Management/Matchmaker (GIM), and Persistence Database. These services will be broken up into smaller micro-services to meet performance, scalability, and availability standards. The Game Server and Client are very close to being Diffusionized, which will close the communication gap between the backend and front-end. In addition, the system is being optimized using a technique called Router Biasing. This allows the team to apply advanced bandwidth and control bandwidth techniques between service types in the Diffusion network. DEVOPS & IT This month, the DevOps and IT teams completed a project to expand the build system by 50%. This project is an important part of the build and deployment pipeline and the goal of this upgrade was to fully isolate and expand the try-build system. This will lead to much faster check in times for the engineering team and improve overall stability and performance of the builds in general. QA QA’s focus in early April was testing 2.6.3 to get it out to the players. They helped with multiple PTU pushes that led to 2.6.3 going Live. After the push, the team spent a lot of time supporting the Live build before shifting full-time to test the Game Dev branch. This has been both to stabilize the branch and to begin more rigorous testing and preparation toward 3.0. Some of the items being tested include a number of new ships, in-depth sweeps of some procedural planet environments for bugs, testing megamap improvements, new implementations for player interactions, item 2.0 conversions, movement system refactors, and new field of view controls. The development teams have been lining up new documentation and data for QA to polish up to ensure they are ready to jump on new content as it comes online. One of our testers worked directly with the Austin Animation team to clean up new mocap files for the development teams. Several other team members have been working with the Frankfurt QA team for in-depth testing of new and updated engine tools, ensuring that the new tools will function so designers can better implement and create content. PLAYER RELATIONS The Player Relations team was excited to spend a full week with the Turbulent team working on Spectrum improvements and focusing on how we can better improve the new player experience. We’ve begun work on revamping many areas of our service, and started the process of adding headcount to support our ever-growing community. Lastly, of particular relevance to 3.0, the Player Relations team has started adding new Evocati and updating our PTU waves. Foundry 42 UK FOUNDRY 42: UK SPRINTS One of the big advances this past month has been with the player interaction system. Further improvement of the personal inner thoughts system will allow players to select functionality which is not directly tied to a particular object, like selecting an emote or exiting your seat. There will still be a quick select function to access default actions for experienced players. Also, item ports now allow objects to be physically attached to other objects, such as, how a sight is attached to a weapon. The air traffic controller sprint was set up to figure out how to manage the flow of traffic to a location, in particular, it is responsible for assigning out and reserving a landing pad when a player wants to land, as well as freeing up that landing pad once they’ve landed and cleared the area. Conversely, this system will deal with reserving a landing pad and spawning a ship when the player wants to take off. The initial stages of the implementation are now underway and the team worked on the underlying structure of how the system works. The functionality on the Character Status system is almost finished, which included bringing the procedural breathing and suit punctures to final implementation. Once this is done, the focus will be getting the system switched on by default in the game. The team is also working on Pickup and Carry, which is a bit of a mashup between the player interaction system and the usables sprint. The usables were more concerned with getting the AI to interact with objects in the environment, whereas the player interaction system is more for the player UI to interact with the environment. These two systems are now being brought together so the player can pick up, carry, and then place objects in our universe. Finally, they completed the initial development of the conversation tech for the subsumption tool, which streamlines the creation of NPC conversations. It has been handed over to the designers to test by setting up different conversations. They’ll provide feedback on any necessary improvements. AUDIO The audio team has been working on procedural planet audio processes, including R&D and planning, for systems to map and modify audio automatically. Work continues on the Audio Propagation System, the breathing system, audio for the character status system and also a dialogue tool called Word Up. For weapons sound effects, the ship weapon ‘tool kit’ is in progress, which includes reload SFX for the Gallant, the weapon tail refactor and multi-positional code support for weapons, which will handle summing up the audio for many of the same weapons mounted to a single ship. For ships, the Prospector audio is done, with work on the Greycat and Cutlass Black still in progress. The music department worked on the ‘Dynamically looping cinematic ambient music system’ and the ‘addition of tension system.’ They also cleaned up dogfighting music logic, prototyped planetside procedural music, and added more music to the launcher. GRAPHICS The graphics team worked on many separate pieces of tech this month. The first is the integration of real-time, lit volumetric fog from Lumberyard, which is going to be a huge boost for the lighting and environment art teams. The render-to-texture feature is progressing quickly, and the initial version is in the UI team’s hands. They will use it to upgrade our 2D UI’s, and create 3D holographic projections to power various holographic displays. The real-time environment probe tech is nearing completion and allows fully dynamic bounced light and reflections on a planet where traditional light-baking techniques are not possible. VISUAL EFFECTS The visual effects team have completed a pass at planetary entry VFX. The effect is controlled by speed and atmosphere density values. With this core functionality in place along with advances in the engine trail tech, these two sprints are now being merged. Design and art feedback were being implemented alongside optimization and bug-fixing. In addition, there have been some lightning entity effect improvements, where realistic lightning and other electrical type effects are created. The first pass of vfx for the MISC Prospector, including thruster improvements and damage, has been completed. For weapons, initial work on the Apocalypse Arms Scourge Railgun continues, including the charging and charged effects. Additionally, the weapons team completed the Preacher Distortion Scattergun and the Apocalypse Arms Scattershot. They also made good headway on the Klaus and Werner LMG. SHIP TEAM This month the Reclaimer received a lot of attention. On the exterior, work on the hull was completed and the huge claw came together. The team is now splitting the mesh up and getting it ready to use the damage tech. On the interior, the habitation, tech decks, and an enormous salvage processing room have been fully fleshed out. Next on the list is finishing the drone room, engineering deck and cockpit. Work also began on derelict ships, so that design can lay the groundwork for mission specific scenarios encompassing ships and wreckage. An initial batch of ships that include the Connie, Caterpillar, Starfarer and Freelancer are being broken down to their structural elements and made to look destroyed. Material work is being done in tandem to give the ships a more deteriorated and aged look. A wreckage component was also worked on. This is a library of nondescript ship parts that will be used to help embed and integrate derelict scenarios into the environments. The Razor artwork is now complete, and the ship has gone through a full damage pass. Some cool work has been done on breaking it into pieces. Currently, LODs are being finalised on the hull, and art is working closely with tech design to get it flight ready. The Hull C also progressed nicely. The hull mesh is now largely complete, manoeuvring thrusters were incorporated and polish work done to match the interior and exterior. A detail pass adding all the finer details expected is ongoing. The interior went through the block out phase, and is now well into art production. By utilising assets from other MISC ships, spaces can be created quickly and efficiently, with the intention to use these across the Hull series. ENVIRONMENTS The environment team alongside the graphics team continues to explore ways to create volumetric forms in space through simulations and initial renders.The surface outposts are finishing their interior visual benchmarks for engineering, habitation and hydroponics. These will then be distributed to the various outpost layouts and configurations. The team continues to set dress, light and polish these interior spaces to build character while also exploring options for navigation and branding based on the lore. The Truck stop space stations have moved into the final art phase, so the team is busy building the shader library and working on example pieces to final quality. As it’s a modular system, the building set is being refined to explore potential build configurations, which will ensure the set is as flexible as possible. ANIMATION The animation team worked on cover AI, with the aim to improve all animation assets beyond ‘functional.’ Breathing state improvements are now in line with backend code improvements. This involves getting curve data out of Maya and into Dataforge, which allows for more refined procedural breathing curves. The team started implementing multi-directional takedowns for killing enemies within close proximity of the player. Also, there were further improvements to weapon setup & reloads across the board, including the Devastator shotgun, Arrowhead sniper rifle, Gallant laser rifle, and P8-SC ballistic SMG As well as melee improvements for pistol and stocked weapons. Finally, the Derby Foundry team were busy with face and body animations for our 3.0 Mission Givers and handed over 500 facial animation files that are now ready to be implemented in Squadron 42. The Motion Capture team has tracked and solved almost 1000 new body animations for various characters within the Persistent Universe.The team also worked on new facial animations for shooting guns. Animation Director Steve Bender has been a great source of inspiration, so expect new and improved faces soon. Foundry 42 DE FOUNDRY 42: DE ENVIRONMENT ART The Environment Art team fleshed out the different procedural terrain elements of Delamar, which is mostly covered with mountainous shapes.When placing the Levski landing zone onto the planet, there were a few challenges such as: What’s the best workflow to create the large borehole in front of the landing zone and the roads leading up to it, and what specific elements are needed to make the station blend smoothly with the terrain? The exterior of Levski had a few changes made to it, such as integrating garages on the lower levels so players can make an approach with ground vehicles. The team also made progress on the mining structures in and around the borehole to give them a more functional feeling and a polish pass. There were also some final touches done to the moons to differentiate them from each other. VFX Work moved forward as the team collaborated with the engineers to flesh out the tools and tech required for the procedural planets. Progress was made on the manual setups required to spawn the effects in engine, and moons are slowly taking on their own subtle personalities. CINEMATICS The team’s primary focus continued to be performance capture scenes across numerous Squadron 42 chapters. The current priority are story scenes on board the giant Shubin Archon facility, so the level designers and artists can finalize the Shubin environments. In addition, the team edited a big sequence for the middle of the story and progressed with setting the vista for a major story event during the opening of the game. TECH ART The Tech Art team performed R&D regarding foot constrain locomotion. The end goal is to get the feet to properly plant on the ground with each step, to the give the character a true sense of weight, at all speeds and angles. There was work on some skinning tasks to widen the range of character customization. Collaboration with the weapons team continued, both on Tools to help programmatically spot errors in the pipeline, as well as rigging for new and updated weapons. SYSTEM DESIGN The System Design team progressed on the Actor Status system. It now incorporates player breathing, suffocating, stamina, g-forces, drinking, injuries, etc. Other work included: subsystems for suits getting punctured in combat, the ability to patch damaged suits, and recharge oxygen tanks. The usable systems reached full production status and is now being mass produced for both S42 and PU. Once implemented into the levels, these will make the world feel so much more alive as the AI will be able to interact with almost any item in the world. The system is incredibly flexible from simple actions such as an AI leaning on a wall to complex ones like the opening of a service locker, accessing the power supply item inside, inspecting an item inside the power supply, removing a broken item and replacing it with a new one, and restarting the power supply. The system allows either the player or AI perform those actions, or have both players and AI working on the same usable together. On the social side of things, the design for the Spectrum game integration is being finalized. This will allow players to access core Spectrum functions inside the game, like party creation and management, chat, friend’s list, organizations, etc. The goal is to keep the majority of the stuff available in the Spectrum app, while the core functionality needed for minute to minute gameplay remains available directly in game. LEVEL DESIGN The Level Design team finished their design pass on the Surface Outpost, as the Art Team worked on its modular system. Levski is now being integrated into the procedural version of Delmar. An Upper Lobby was created, which will connect the Levski interior to the planetary surface via airlocks and serve as a place for a future possible air rail to outlying landing areas. Garages were implemented on the surface so people can spawn or park their vehicles. We also added new approaches to the Levski site itself, with roads and parking zones. Additional custom work that included planning out the elevator network and worker’s areas, and adding administration offices, was also done. QA The QA team began testing the new Stanton System persistent universe level this month with a focus on finding any major gameplay blockers. The entire process of connecting to this new PU level has changed, which led to additional tweaks and testing done to the in-house server launcher tool called Catapult. With Port Olisar now in the Stanton System level, traveling between the different moons, landing on them, getting out, etc, is being tested. In the Subsumption Editor, the new Conversation system was recently added and was available for an initial round of testing. All issues encountered were entered in JIRA and sent over to our Austin studio to be investigated. The QA team also worked with the internal system designers to fix up the AI Basic Feature Test level and add behaviors for all AI NPCs, so that their designated tests could be run. The Feature Tester is kicked off whenever new code changes are submitted to the Game-Dev stream. The AI Basic FeatureTest level catches any AI related issues that could potentially be caused by a code submission. The team also further expanded QA’s depth of testing with the Particle Editor. New VFX test cases were created and added to the Editor checklist. These tests will continue to be maintained as additional feedback is gathered from other technical testers and the team. LIGHTING The lighting team supported the upcoming 3.0 release of the moons Celin, Yela, and Daymar. There’s been a particular focus on the visual quality of the surface outposts for 3.0 and all subsequent surface outpost variations. The first stage of our new Light Group system is being implemented, which will alter the lighting and mood of a surface outpost based on various states like low power, emergency, or hazardous conditions. AI The ship AI team refactored the Movement system to unify the movement pipeline between NPC’s and Ships. This enables the NPC’s to truly control ships while piloting them, amongst other things. This will ultimately give the AI a finer level of control and a way to contextualize their actions. There were some general improvements to NPC’s AI pathfinding and navigation. At times, AI NPC’s were getting blocked on certain configurations of corners, and this work will resolve that. There were also some fixes for the mesh regeneration to correctly exclude areas that AI should not be able to get to. Regarding the mission system, the team focused on two different chapters of S42 mission: expanding existing functionalities and adding new ones for the designers. Through dataforge, designers can now define and initialize which default missions play when entering specific game modes. Through the subsumption visualizer, designers are now allowed to overwrite the starting mission for a specific level. This ultimately makes the setup and review of missions much more efficient for the team. Designers can now create a platform, which is a list of items that live within an object container with their known world coordinates at runtime. A platform can be accessed by the mission logic and customized in numerous configurations. For example, an Idris would be a basic platform and, in the game, multiple Idris’s can be setup in different ways: occupied by pirates, another by UEE, etc. All those unique setups would reference the same base platform of the Idris and have their own unique customization layers on top. WEAPONS The weapons team has been blocking out new FPS weapons: two Vanduul weapons, four from Kastak Arms, three from Gemini, and one from a new manufacturer. For ship weapons, a first pass on the Knightbridge Arms Ballistic Cannon Size 2 and 3 was completed. This is the first ship weapon through the new pipeline to prep for the modular upgradeable system. ENGINE The engine team worked on Object Container streaming to help with the PU and SolEd, which is an internal tool that helps easily build full Solar Systems. Star Citizen and Squadron 42 are developed with C++, a programming language known for high performance. But due to the languages design, large projects can suffer from long compile times if not careful (the time spent translating program code into machine instructions). Even with careful code design, compile times for a large project tends to increase over time, so the team recently spent time doing house cleaning on existing code. For this, the team had to touch each GameCode file (nearly 2000 files). In the end, it improved the compile time by several minutes, which will have a positive impact company wide.The engine team also spent time further improving the procedural planet tech, including terrain blending, blending of terrain and scattered objects, and improved transition-dissolve-blending. Turbulent TURBULENT This month, Turbulent released Spectrum version 0.3.3. This version contains a new type of discussion called nested threads. A nested thread works by stacking replies to an earlier comment directly below it, so users can see a discussion evolve from a specific comment or reply. The first level is sorted by votes, so the most upvoted sub trees are on to top. Nested threads are akin to Reddit discussions. When a new discussion is started on Spectrum 0.3.3, the user can choose between a nested thread and a chronological thread. This new type of discussion allow for faster and more dynamic threads. The upvote feature is also useful for the community teams to gather questions, among other things. Turbulent is looking into how the nested thread option can be transformed into a view option, so users can decide how to view threads. The team is also improving the unread status as well as adding staff tracking, so users can know from the top of the thread list which ones have a had a staff response. This will be particularly useful for the Ask The Dev forums. Also included in 0.3.3 is the ability to flag posts for moderation. This works within orgs and the public community. Users can flag a reply, a thread, or message for moderation, so public moderators know to intervene. In your private orgs, anyone who has the moderation permission will receive a notification to investigate. There has been massive progress on mobile support for the keyboard system in 0.3.3 and it should be fixed in the next release. Currently the team is working on the 0.3.4 release. The main feature of this release will be more refinement on tags in sub forums. These tags will be surfaced at the top level of the community index in the channel list, so that users can jump directly from a global community index to a specific tag within a channel. The second part of this release is that users will be able to bookmark a tag just like it was a channel in itself. This will give the functionality of a sub forum, while keeping the tagging system in place. The team is also adding more filters and working on the search subsystem, which will power all the “view my own posts,” “view somebody else’s posts,” and let users search by author, role, or dev posts. This feature will also power a new mini profile, so users will be able to just jump directly to a list of posts from a specific player directly from the mini profile. Virtual lists are also being developed on the back end. Currently, there is an issue rendering long presence lists in the chat lobbies, which causes the backers group to collapse by default in the general forum. Virtual lists will allow for rendering what is visible plus a buffer. This will save on performance and allow everybody to be present in the lobby lists. One of the most reported issues is that users can’t jump directly to a message and then go back in time. Virtual lists will allow this. In the meantime, the research team from Spectrum is working on the overlay for Spectrum desktop, which is an integration between the game and Spectrum. This means taking the redux application store and moving it to an area where two processes can benefit from it. Then, there can be an overlay that will keep the game and the desktop client synchronized without having to double the resources for it. There has been some research on PM groups, specifically the ability to refactor the currently 1 on 1 PM system to have more than one person in a group, so users can have a party system for specific a lobby. Turbulent also visited the Austin studio to presented the new art design for the site revamp. There were also some major infrastructure changes as the platform was moved to a new set of hardware. There was a brief downtime while it was shifted, but everything was quickly back up and running better than before. Community COMMUNITY The Banu Defender was launched via a concept presentation. As part of the process, the ship rollout system was upgraded with an improved Q&A, a live Town Hall to discuss the ship, and a focus on the development process in Jump Point and the Vault. Simultaneously, the updated Banu race was revealed in a futuristic ‘National Geographic’ style magazine. The Star Citizen store added new merchandise, including Star Citizen and Squadron shirts and hats, plus a beautiful new Terra mousepad. Subscribers can purchase exclusive Polaris shirts. Shipping and handling was revamped as a part of these new additions. Now, merchandise ships immediately instead of as a pre-order. Internally, the team is in the process of supporting a major website update, which includes a long-awaited overhaul to the ship stats page. New player content is also in production thanks to community feedback, which has highlighted how daunting Star Citizen can be to new players. Tickets for Gamescom went on sale this month and event planning continues. Our community team and staff from Austin attended DREAMHACK, where they met with backers and talked Star Citizen. The con concluded with an appropriately Texas-themed BBQ Bar Citizen. Devs also attended the backer-organized BritizenCon and took part in not one, but two panels! It was an honor to participate and connect with the community. The team ran four Happy Hour livestreams this month, including a live look at how production schedules are made. Happy Hour will be going on a ‘half hiatus’ for a bit as the team works on the New Player Experience videos, but it will return to its usual schedule in the near future. Conclusion WE’LL SEE YOU NEXT MONTH… Przeczytaj całość
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